Q: Hi, I'm a regular donor in the U.S. Biolife Orem Ut program and I donate twice a week. How often can I donate plasma? (I ask because I know that the American Red Cross states on its website that they will only let you donate 12 times a year - because it's all FDA rules or is it just a red cross policy?) I know that according to FDA regulation a donor can donate twice a week, but is there a limit to the frequency of how many times can I donate?
Also, I had a friend who used to donate plasma for money, and she had a twice per week schedule. Her Blood Bank would only allow people to donate twice a week and desired that people do not donate more than twice a month.
A: For plasma donors, the American Red Cross website says:
"You can donate every 28 days, and up to 13 times a year. Plasma can be donated at least once every three weeks, preferably every four weeks. Platelet donors can donate as often as every eight days, and up to 24 times in a 12-month period.
Red blood donation is usually limited to every three months. You can give a red blood every 56 days - 6 times a year. You can donate whole blood as often as every 84 days at the Mayo Clinic Blood Donor Center in Rochester NY."
For plasma, you can donate frequently as twice in any period of seven days, and you must have at least one rest day between donations. A person can donate more than 2 times every 7 days with at least one day interval between donations. So, you can donate plasma up to two times a week.
During each subsequent visit, a staff member checks the vital signs of the donor, to answer questions about their medical history. Before a donor is accepted Biolife Plasma Services donor program, he or she must undergo a medical examination and review of their medical history.
Donating plasma is a low risk procedure with minimal or no side effects. . Generally, the body of healthy donors can quickly replace the plasma that is removed during the donation. Source Plasma donations can be collected twice a week, while total protein and immunoglobulin levels remain within acceptable limits.
The body replaces the plasma removed during the donation process quick, therefore, a healthy person can donate as often as twice in a seven day period, with at least one day between donations. However, since the person will be able to donate plasma as often as every 48 hours, "safely", some donation centers (like CSL Plasma) may allow an individual to make more donations on a weekly schedule.
International Plasma Donation Rules
In Australia, Australian Red Cross Blood Bank allows individuals to donate plasma every two weeks, although they prefer donations a little further apart. Plasma donors in the UK can donate as often as every 28 days.
But in the United States, federal regulations provide that an individual can donate as often as two times in seven days, with at least two days between donations.
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