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The Donation Process Step by Step

Donating blood is a simple thing to do, but it can make a big difference in the lives of others. The donation process from the time you arrive until the time you leave takes about an hour. The donation itself is only about 8-10 minutes on average. The steps in the process are:

Step 1: Registration

First step for blood donation

  1. Our staff and volunteers will sign you in and go over basic eligibility and donation information.
  2. You will read information about donating blood, and will be asked to show a donor card, driver's license, or other
    form(s) of ID.

Step 2: Health History & Mini-Physical

Second step for blood donation

  1. You will answer some questions during a private and confidential interview about your health history and places you have traveled.
  2. We will check your temperature, pulse, blood pressure and hemoglobin level present in a sample of blood. 

Step 3: The Donation

Third step for blood donation

  1. We will cleanse an area on your arm and insert a brand new sterile needle for the blood draw. This feels like a quick pinch and is over in seconds.
  2. The actual donation takes about 8-10 minutes, during which you will be seated comfortably. Certain donation types, such as platelets, red cells or plasma (apheresis donations) can take up to 2 hours.
  3. When approximately a pint of blood has been collected, the donation is complete and a staff person will place a bandage on your arm.

Step 4: Refreshments

Fourth step for blood donation

  1. After donating, you should have a snack and something to drink in the refreshments area. You can leave the site after 10-15 minutes and continue with your normal daily activities.
  2. Enjoy the feeling of accomplishment knowing that you have helped save lives.