WHY DONATE BLOOD?
Every 3 seconds someone needs blood, yet less than 5% of the population donates blood. That’s why we need your help.
Your blood donation could save someone's life. Donors are needed on a daily basis for the thousands of patients who require blood transfusions. A single donation can help up to five patients. The need for blood always exceeds the available supply, so you can be sure that your blood donation is vital.
BLOOD DONOR PROGRAMS
The Blood Donor Program is a great asset to the community. Through voluntary blood donation you can walk-in with no appointment and give blood that directly benefits the patients at Maimonides who are part of your community. In addition to general blood donations you can donate blood for your own surgery or for a family member, or replace blood that was used during a patient’s stay.
Autologous (Autogeneic) Blood Donor Program offers the opportunity for you to donate your own blood for use during your surgery. Autogeneic or autologous transfusion is considered the safest method, because receiving your own blood minimizes risk of an allergic reaction. The process involves depositing one or more pints of your own blood, one to four weeks in advance of your scheduled surgery. Remember, at least 3 business days are needed to process the blood before transfusion.
Directed (Designated) Blood Donor Program enables your loved ones to donate for you. Donors come to the hospital at least five days prior to your surgery and designate blood for you. All donations matching the required blood type will be reserved for use in your surgery.
Replacement Blood Donation allows family and friends to make donations to replace blood that was utilized by you.
Who can donate blood?
To be eligible you must:
- Be in good health
- Be between 17 and 75 years old (16 year olds are eligible with signed parental consent)
- Weigh a minimum of 110 pounds
- Have not had a tattoo or body piercing within the past 12 months
- Not be pregnant or nursing
- Have not had major dental work within the past 3 days
- Have not traveled to an area with known malaria risk in the past year
- Have not spent time that adds up to three or more months in the United Kingdom between 1980-1996; or spent time that adds up to five or more years in Europe from 1980 to the present
- Meet all other requirements
How do I prepare for the donation?
Eat your regular meals. You do not need to fast and should not donate blood on an empty stomach. Bring photo identification, a list of any medications you take, and your reading glasses.
What happens when I donate blood?
There are four basic steps in the blood donation process which together take between 30-45 minutes.
Step 1. Registration – you will receive information about donating blood and a registration form for completion.
Step 2. Medical History – a medical screener will ask you about your health history in a private interview area, a mini physical will be performed that includes blood pressure, temperature and blood iron level measurements.
Step 3. Donation – you will be asked to sit in a reclining chair. Your arm will be sterilized with a swab and a sterile needle inserted into a vein – in the crook of your arm on the opposite side of your elbow. You will only feel a small pinch when the needle is inserted. The donation process rarely takes more than 10 minutes and the quanity of blood taken is about one pint.
Step 4. Refreshments – you will be invited to sit and enjoy refreshments. Most donors are able to resume their normal activities immediately. You are advised not to engage in strenuous activities for 24 hours after your donation.
Is donating blood safe?
Completely! Sterile, single use and disposable equipment is used for each donation and then safely discarded. It is not possible to acquire any disease from donating blood.
How often can I donate?
You may donate every 56 days, up to six times a year. Platelets can be donated through our TRIMA apheresis program up to 24 times a year with at least a three-day interval between donations.
Different patients require different blood components - either platelets, red blood cells or plasma. TRIMA, the technology behind our apheresis donor program, allows for the simultaneous and separate collection of platelets, red cell and plasma from whole blood.
How is a TRIMA Apheresis donation different from a whole blood donation?
Blood is drawn from your arm and channeled through continuous, sterile, single use tubing to an automated system. TRIMA separates and collects the needed component(s), then safely returns remaining components to you.
TRIMA Apheresis collections are safer for patients
By donating component(s) via an apheresis donation, you ensure that the recipients of your donations are receiving a full and consistent dose of whatever component they need. You donate the quantity needed to give the maximum benefit of that component for the patient. For example, an effective dose of platelets for a recipient requires an average of five to six units of platelets made from whole blood from separate donors. The same effectiveness is achieved from one apheresis donor, which is safer and reduces a patient's exposure to multiple donors.
For more information on apheresis donations, or to make an appointment, please contact the Blood Donor Center at (718) 283-7657.
WANT TO HOST A BLOOD DRIVE?
We can help if you supply the donors and a location. We conduct blood drives in our community and provide staff, medical supplies, advertising materials and refreshments. As an alternative, we also arrange transportation for small groups to come to our Blood Center to make donations. For more information, call the Maimonides Blood Donor Center at (718) 283-7657.