A common concern among cancer survivors is whether they’re eligible to donate blood. Cancer patients use nearly 25% of the blood supply – more than patients fighting any other disease – so it’s no surprise that these survivors are often motivated to donate blood to give back for the help they’ve received.
Wondering if you’re able to donate blood as a fellow cancer survivor? Read below for all the need-to-know details.
Your eligibility to donate depends on the type of cancer you were diagnosed with and your treatment history.
- If you had leukemia or lymphoma, including Hodgkin’s Disease and other cancers of the blood, you are not eligible to donate.
- Other types of cancer are acceptable if the cancer has been treated successfully, it has been more than 12 months since treatment was completed and there has been no cancer recurrence in this time.
- Lower risk in-situ cancers, including squamous or basal cell cancers of the skin, that have been completely removed and healed do not require a 12-month waiting period.
- Precancerous conditions of the uterine cervix do not disqualify you from donation if the abnormality has been treated successfully.
It’s best to discuss your particular situation with the health historian at the time of your donation, or you can speak with an American Red Cross donor eligibility specialist at 1-866-236-3276. You can also contact your own doctors and health providers to discuss if blood donation is right for you.
National Cancer Survivor Month
June is known as National Cancer Survivor Month, a time to celebrate those who have beaten the odds. Many cancer patients require blood transfusions, so giving blood is a great way to both celebrate your success, thank those who helped you and pay that help forward to current cancer patients in need. If you meet the eligibility requirements above, the Red Cross would love to welcome you in to celebrate your incredible achievement and cheer you on as you help save lives. Schedule your next appointment now!