COVID-19 is a new strain of the coronavirus that was first identified in late 2019 in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China. Symptoms of the virus include fever, cough and shortness of breath.
Although respiratory viruses are not known to be transmitted by blood transfusion and there have been no reported cases of transfusion-transmitted coronavirus, SBC is taking a precautionary approach to blood safety, and we have implemented a 14-day deferral for exposure to someone diagnosed with or suspected of having COVID-19. Additionally, if you were diagnosed with or suspected of having COVID-19, you will need to be 28 days symptom-free in order to donate. Those with a pending diagnostic test for COVID-19 will not be eligible to donate. We encourage anyone who falls into these categories to call our Resource Nurse at 650-725-7336 to discuss their eligibility. If you have recently donated blood and any of the aforementioned scenarios apply, please call our Post-Donation Callback Line at 650-724-9968 immediately so we can evaluate your previous donations.
Please note that donating blood is an “essential activity” for our community. We still have a need for blood donors to turn out for patients. Remember that COVID-19 does not pose any special risk to blood donors during the donation process or from attending blood drives. All instruments used during the donation process are sterilized, and most are single-use only. Additionally, since blood donors must be healthy and without fever on the day of donation, the risk of exposure to a sick person is extremely low at a blood drive. For more on the measures we are taking to ensure donor safety, read our FAQ on blood donation as it relates to coronavirus.
Remember that the best way to protect yourself and prevent the spread of respiratory illnesses is to practice preventative measures such as washing your hands with soap and water often and avoiding touching your eyes, nose or mouth with unclean hands. For more information on how to protect yourself and the community from getting and spreading respiratory illnesses like COVID-19 and other important updates, please visit the CDC website.
Read more about COVID-19 on our blog: stanfordbloodcenter.org/faq-on-novel-coronavirus-and-blood-donation
Read the Santa Clara County Public Heath Department FAQs: https://www.sccgov.org/sites/phd/DiseaseInformation/novel-coronavirus/Pages/frequently-asked-questions.aspx
Read the CDC guidance for COVID-19 high-risk groups: www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/specific-groups/high-risk-complications.html?CDC_AA_refVal=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cdc.gov%2Fcoronavirus%2F2019-ncov%2Fhigh-risk%2Fhigh-risk-complications.html
Find CDC resources for COVID-19 education: www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html