Please continue to give blood

Coronavirus is on everyone’s minds and rightfully so. But it’s extremely important right now for healthy people to continue to give blood while following guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other agencies. With school closures and business shutdowns, more than 20% of this week’s blood collections has disappeared—almost overnight.

As the chief medical & scientific officer for the Vitalant network of blood centers, I am personally writing to urge all healthy individuals to donate blood, wherever they can.

Donating blood is safe. The coronavirus does not pose any known risk to blood donors during the donation process.

If you are not feeling well, please do not donate; Vitalant does NOT test for COVID-19.

Here’s what Vitalant is doing to protect our donors:

Only healthy people are encouraged to come give blood. In fact, donors must be feeling well and free of respiratory illness symptoms, including fever, to be eligible to donate.

People who meet certain travel and other at-risk criteria for coronavirus infection are deferred ahead of time from donating.

Our staff wear gloves and personal protective gear; they wipe down donor-touched areas often and after every collection using a disinfectant.

Staff use sterile, single-use collection sets for each donor and scrub the donor’s arm for 30 seconds before the collection.

Staff who don’t feel well are required to stay home.

Not having enough blood to meet basic patient needs will cause another public health crisis. While elective surgeries may be canceled, many patients cannot afford to wait for lifesaving blood and platelet donations. Please click the button below or call us at 877-25-VITAL (877-258-4825) to make your appointment today.

In these difficult times, giving blood is something healthy individuals can do to help the sick. Please help us ensure that our community health professionals have the blood on hand they need to care for their patients. The only source for blood—literally in many hospital procedures, the source of life—is another human being.

Thank you for stepping up and helping out with a blood donation during this critical time.


Ralph Vassallo, MD

Chief Medical & Scientific Officer