COVID Updates

Click here for updates to closures, protocols, sanitizing & current news regarding The Blood Center's response to the COVID virus.

Updates to COVID19 protocol, locations, etc.

We have temporarily closed some donor centers. Hammond, Mandeville, Metairie, Slidell, Thibodaux and Westbank donor centers remain open. Additional mobile blood drives are returning, visit The Blood Center to search for blood drives in your area.

Donors are required to use the links above to schedule their visit. As locations fill up, we may close appointments and ask that you give later in the week or month. This allows for a continued blood supply for the near future. If something happens, this allows us (and you) open communication for rescheduling.

A few updates to blood donations in the news:

  • Potential donors with allergy or cold-like symptoms are asked to postpone donation attempts until all symptoms have passed. This request is in response to FDA recommendations, and in an abundance of caution during the COVID-19 outbreak.
  • The FDA published four guidance documents related to COVID-19 donor eligibility including changes to previous policies on MSM, vCJD, malaria and variances. We have updated our donor questionnaire following the FDA's guidelines. Click here to contact us if you were previously deferred and feel you can now donate. 
  • TBC is collecting COVID-19 Convalescent Plasma (CCP) donations from recovered COVID-19 donors. Individuals are only eligible to donate Convalescent Plasma IF they have tested positive for COVID-19 by laboratory testing or from an antibody test performed by The Blood Center AND meet all regular blood donor requirements. Click here to learn more about this investigational initiative approved by the FDA for use in the treatment of seriously ill patients fighting COVID-19.
  • If you have received one of the FDA Approved COVID-19 vaccines, there is no deferral period provided you meet all other blood donation criteria. All other COVID-19 vaccines are a two week deferral period.

What you can do:

  • Ask yourself if you're feeling healthy... Good! continue on.
  • If you have tested positive for COVID-19, you must be 14 days recovered with no symptoms in order to donate blood. If asymptomatic, you must wait 14 days from the date of your positive test result.
  • Schedule a blood donation. Blood already on the shelves saves lives, and maintaining a sufficient blood supply is essential to ensure patients in need receive optimal treatment. If you don't have an account yet, just enter your first and last name (avoiding any initials, middle names, etc.) and your Donor ID or Unit Number.
  • Begin the health screening via FastLane on the day of your donation BEFORE you enter a donor center or mobile blood drive
  • Eat a good meal and don't forget your ID
  • Arrive as close to your appointment time as possible to reduce your wait and follow the social distancing measures suggested by the CDC
  • After your donation, consider sharing with friends and family what you did on social media. It's good, positive, and you may encourage someone else into donating

 What we're doing:

The Blood Center would like to emphasize that sanitation, cleanliness, and safety for our donors, patients, and staff has always been #1. Every day, as a part of our regular operations, our donor centers and mobile buses follow appropriate infection control standards put forth by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) which include:

  • Sanitation of donor waiting rooms and donation chairs.
  • Hospital grade disinfectant wipes and cleaning formulas
  • Frequently changed single use medical gloves
  • Various actions on the part of blood centers to implement social distancing and other safety protocols for donors and staff
    • Hand sanitizer is provided in donation areas for donors and staff
    • Space chairs in waiting room, donation room, canteen, mobiles as much as possible
    • Increase cleaning and disinfecting -pens/clip boards/etc. between each donor
    • All donors are given their own single use glove to wear while using their squeeze ball

According to the FDA, there have been no reported or suspected cases of transfusion-transmitted COVID-19 Coronavirus and there is no known risk of transmission through the blood donation process, since respiratory viruses are generally not known to be passed on through blood donation or transfusion. In addition, blood donation is not a mass gathering or social event. As the outbreak continues to spread, additional challenges could arise, which could potentially reduce the number of eligible donors.