Sunday, February 7, 2021

Blood Donation Criteria and Procedure




  • Men can donate safely once in every three months while women can donate every four months.

  • Age between 18 and 60 years 

  • The donor should be in a healthy state of mind and body.

  • Past one year - not been treated for Rabies or received Hepatitis B immune globulin

  • Past six months - not had a tattoo, ear or skin piercing or acupuncture, not received blood or blood products, no serious illness or major surgery, no contact with a person with hepatitis or yellow jaundice.

  • Past three months - not donated blood or been treated for Malaria. 

  • Past one month - had any immunizations.

  • Past 72 hours - had dental work or taken Aspirin 

  • Past 48 hours - taken any antibiotics or any other medications (Allopathic or Ayurveda or Siddha or Homeopathy)

  • Past 24 hours - taken alcoholic beverages

  • Presently - not suffering from cough, influenza or sore throat, common cold

  • Women should not be pregnant or breast feeding her child or menstruating.

  • No diabetes, chest pain, heart disease or high BP, cancer, blood clotting problem or blood disease, unexplained fever weight loss, fatigue, night sweats, enlarged lymph nodes in armpits, neck or groin, white patches in the mouth etc. 

  • No history of TB, bronchial asthma or allergic disorder, liver disease, kidney disease, fits or fainting, blue or purple spots on the skin or mucous membranes, received human pituitary - growth hormones etc.


  • Temperature - Normal (oral temperature not exceeding 37.50 C)

  • Pulse - between 50 and 100/minute with no irregularities

  • Blood Pressure -Systolic 100-180 mm Hg and Diastolic 50 - 100 mm Hg

  • Body weight - not less than 45 Kg

  • Haemoglobin - not less than 12.5 g/dL- 

Procedure to measure Hb using CuSO4:

  1. Massage the finger to be pricked (preferably ring finger)

  2. Disinfect it

  3. Prick using disposable needle/ lancet

  4. Put the drop of blood in CuSO4 containing beaker

  5. If the blood drop sinks, Hb is more than 12.5, hence the person can donate blood (provided no other contraindication).


  • Identify donor and label blood collection bag and test tubes 

  • Ask the donor to state their full name.

  • Ensure that: 

  1. the blood collection bag is of the correct type;

  2. the labels on the blood collection bag and all its satellite bags, sample tubes and donor records have the correct patient name and number;

  3. the information on the labels matches with the donor's information.

  • Select a large, firm vein, preferably in the antecubital fossa, from an area free from skin lesions or scars.

  • Clean the site of venepuncture by alcohol and let it dry.

  • Perform phlebotomy using a 16-gauge needle, which is usually attached to the blood collection bag. Use of a retractable needle or safety needle with a needle cover is preferred if available, but all should be cut off at the end of the procedure.

  • Ask the donor to open and close the fist slowly every 10–12 seconds during collection.

  • Remove the tourniquet when the blood flow is established or after 2 minutes, whichever comes first. 

  • Ask the patient to squeeze a ball intermittently during the procedure.

  • Monitor the donor and the donated unit.

  • Remove the needle and collect samples.

  • Cut off the needle using a sterile pair of scissors. 

  • Collect blood samples for laboratory testing



• ask the donor to remain in the chair and relax for a few minutes; 

• inspect the venepuncture site; if it is not bleeding, apply a bandage to the site; if it is bleeding, apply further pressure;

 • ask the donor to sit up slowly and ask how the person is feeling; 

• before the donor leaves the donation room, ensure that the person can stand up without dizziness and without a drop in blood pressure;

 • offer the donor some refreshments


Transfer the blood unit to a proper storage container according to the blood centre requirements and the product 

• Ensure that collected blood samples are stored and delivered to the laboratory with completed documentation, at the recommended temperature, and in a leakproof, closed container


Written by our guest author - Harsh Jogi and Ayushi Gupta

Illustration by Devi Bavishi



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