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American Red Cross Blood Services Logo
American Red Cross Blood Services - New England Region
Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont

Where Tradition and the New Millennium Meet


 

Giving Blood
Who's Eligible - Requirements

Basic Eligibility Requirements

 

Most healthy adults can give blood through the American Red Cross. You meet the basic eligibility requirements if you:

  • are at least 17 years old*
  • weigh at least 110 pounds
  • are in good health on the day of donation
  • have no history of exposure to hepatitis or HIV/AIDS
  • your last blood donation was at least 56 days (8 weeks) ago
  • have valid identification such as a driver's license, blood donor card, passport, etc.

 

Other  Eligibility Requirements

 

 

 

Condition / Medication / Travel

Can Donate Blood?

Acitretin (Soriatane) for psoriasis (within 3 years)

No

Acupuncture

Yes

AIDS or a positive test for HIV

No

Allergies

Yes

Allergy pills

Yes

Antibiotics, if symptom free and course of medication is complete

Yes

Arthritis 

Yes

Aspirin (cannot donate apheresis platelets if aspirin was taken within the last 48 hours)

Yes

Asthma - no difficulty at breathing and no restrictions in normal daily activities at the time of donation.

Yes

Babesiosis

No

Birth control pills

Yes

Blood transfusion in Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Niger or Nigeria since 1977 to present.

No

Blood transfusion in the United Kingdom  (England, Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man) since 1980 to present.

No

Blood transfusion within the last 12  months  (excludes transfusions in the United Kingdom and certain African countries).

No

Body part piercing with unsterile needles  within 12 months

No

Botox injection

Yes

Breastfeeding

Yes

Cancer– non-melanoma skin cancer or in situ cancer if excised and healed.

Yes

Cancer –others (such as breast, brain, lung, prostate, lung cancers) – 1 year after diagnosis or last surgery, last chemotherapy or last radiotherapy (if treatment was needed)
More detailed information

Yes

Clotting factor concentrates for a bleeding disorder such as hemophilia.

No

Cold (active)

No

Common cold with symptoms

No

Creutzfeldt - Jakob disease: Have a blood relative of a Creutzfeldt - Jakob disease patient.  A blood relative is  mother, father, sibling, aunt, uncle or children.

No

Cystic Fibrosis – if no difficulty at time of donation and no limitations or restrictions in normal daily activities.

Yes

Dermatomyositis

Yes

Diabetes

Yes

Dutasteride (Avodart) for benign prostatic hyperplasia  within 6 months

No

Ear  piercing with unsterile needles within 12 months

No

Epilepsy or seizures  (no episodes in the last 3 months)

Yes

Etretinate (Tegison)   for  psoriasis

No

Exposure to common cold, flu or strep, feel well and are free of symptoms

Yes

Fainted once from giving blood

Yes

Fever

No

Finasteride (Propecia / Proscar) (within 4 weeks)

No

Flu with symptoms

No

Heart attack– after 6 months if normal activities have been resumed and you are symptom-free

Yes

Hemochromatosis

No

Hepatitis (viral) at or after age 11

No

High blood pressure - no higher than 180/100 the day of the donation.

Yes

Household contact/exposure to hepatitis more than 12 months  ago

Yes

Hyperthyroidism

Yes

Hypothyroidism

Yes

Idiopathic Thrombocytopenic Purpura – if no recurrence, no splenectomy, adequate platelet count, and not requiring treatment for the condition.

Yes

Illegal or non-prescription drugs use  with  needle, even once.

No

Isotretinoin (Accutane, Amnesteem, Claravis, Sotret)  for acne (within 4 weeks)

No

Leukemia

No

Lupus, any type

Yes

Lymphoma

No

Malaria—Travel to an area with malaria  within the last  12 months

www.newenglandblood.org/giving/malaria.htm

No

Malaria—Moved to the US within the last 3 years after living in a country with malaria

www.newenglandblood.org/giving/malaria.htm

No

Medications for the prevention of osteoporosis

Yes

Medications for the treatment of high  blood cholesterol levels

Yes

Medications for the treatment of hypothyroidism

Yes

Medications for the treatment of migraine

Yes

Medications for the treatment of psychiatric conditions (depression, anxiety, attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder, manic depression, etc.)

Yes

Menstrual cramps

Yes

Mononucleosis - exposed but feel well, with no symptoms, or recovered from mononucleosis

Yes

Mononucleosis with liver involvement (hepatitis or yellow jaundice)

No

Multiple Myeloma

No

Multiple Sclerosis

Yes

Myasthenia Gravis

Yes

Piercing of an ear or other body part with an unsterile needle within 12 months

No

Postpartum more than 6 weeks

Yes

Pregnancy

No

Scleroderma

Yes

Sex—For men and women:  Received money or drugs for sex since 1977.

No

Sex—For men and women: Within the last 12 months had sex with a prostitute or anyone else to takes  money or drugs or other payment for sex.

No

Sex—For men: Had sex even once with another male since 1977
www.newenglandblood.org/giving/msm.htm

No

Sex—For women: Within the last 12 months had a male sex partner who had sex with another male, even once, since 1977

No

Stroke— if symptom free and no restrictions on physical activity

Yes

Tattoo within  the last 12 months with clean needles in a licensed establishment in CT, ME, RI, or VT.    Tattoos done in MA, NH and NY require a 12 month wait period before donating blood.

Yes

Tattoo within  the last 12 months with unclean needles

No

Tegison for psoriasis

No

Tooth extraction / Oral Surgery— more than 3 days ago

Yes

Travel / Residence (certain African countries) :

  1. Lived in, or were born in, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Niger or Nigeria since 1977; or,
  2. since 1977, received a blood transfusion or medical treatment with a blood product in any of these countries; or,
  3. had sex with anyone who, since 1977, was born in or lived in these countries.

 

No

Travel / Residence (Iraq)

Returned from Iraq within the last 12 months.

 

 

No

 

Travel / Residence (United Kingdom) 

 

      Have spent a (cumulative) total of 3 months or longer between January 1, 1980 and December 31, 1996 in the United Kingdom.

 

     The United Kingdom includes England, Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man.

www.newenglandblood.org/giving/story3cjd.htm

 

No

Travel / Residence (United Kingdom/certain European Countries):

 

      Have spent a (cumulative) total of 5 years or more between 1980 and present in Europe or a combination of 5 years or more in the United Kingdom, Europe and Turkey. 

 

European countries include:

·         Albania

·         Austria

·         Belgium

·         Bosnia/Herzegovina

·         Bulgaria

·         Croatia

·         Czech Republic

·         Denmark

·         Finland

·         France

·         Germany

·         Greece

·         Hungary

·         Ireland (Republic of)

·         Italy

·         Kosovo (Federal Republic of Yugoslavia)

·         Liechtenstein

·         Luxembourg

·         Macedonia

·         Montenegro (Federal Republic of Yugoslavia)

·         Netherlands (Holland)

·         Norway

·         Poland

·         Portugal

·         Romania

·         Serbia (Federal Republic of Yugoslavia)

·         Slovak Republic (Slovakia)

·         Slovenia

·         Spain

·         Sweden

·         Switzerland

·         Turkey

·         Yugoslavia (Federal Republic includes Kosovo, Montenegro, and Serbia)

www.newenglandblood.org/giving/story3cjd.htm

 

No

Travel—travel to areas with  malaria in various countries

No

Tuberculosis—when recovered and treatment completed

Yes

Vaccine—Hepatitis B—after 7 days if given prophylactically.

Yes

Vaccine—Measles (Rubeola or red measles)—after 2 weeks

Yes

Vaccine—Mumps—after 2 weeks

Yes

Vaccine—Smallpox—after 8 weeks (56 days)

Yes

*16 with written parental consent in Massachusetts and Maine.

 

 

Last Update: 5/11/2009

 

Contact Us
If you have questions about your eligibility to donate blood, don't hesitate to contact us.

Phone:
781-461-2000 or toll free at 1-800-462-9400

E-mail:
NerContactUs@usa.redcross.org

We welcome your questions.

Basic Eligibility | More Complete Information

 

 


 

©2009 American Red Cross Blood Services - New England Region
Administrative Headquarters, 180 Rustcraft Road, Suite 115, Dedham, MA 02026
Phone: 781-461-2000 or 1-800-462-9400