Blood Donation Checklist

Donating life-saving blood components is so easy and makes a HUGE impact for our patients in need.

Here are the steps you can follow to make your donation a success!

The Week Before

  • Eat Iron Rich Foods - Learn More
  • If you plan to donate platelets, do not take aspirin or aspirin-related products 48 hours prior to your donation.

The Day Before

  • Eat regular meals, with iron-rich foods (avoid fatty foods like hamburgers, fries and ice cream)
  • Drink plenty of water and fluids
  • Get a good night’s sleep

The Day Of

  • Eat a nutritious meal before your donation. Do not fast.
  • Drink plenty of water, juice and uncaffeinated beverages.
  • Bring your Photo ID to your donation appointment. Photo ID must have your date of birth and picture.
  • Wear clothing with loose fitting sleeves

During Registration and Screening

  • You will be asked to read the FDA required reading and complete a your Donor History Questionnaire. Remember to bring the QR code to your donation.
  • You will meet with a team member to discuss your form and travel information to determine eligibility. Follow your Donor Specialist’s instructions, feel free to ask them any questions you may have.

During Donation

  • Show your Donor Specialist any “good veins” that have been used successfully in the past to draw blood
  • Follow your Donor Specialist’s instructions, feel free to ask them any questions you may have.
  • RELAX! You are saving lives!

After Donation

  • Sit up and dangle your feet over the side of the bed for a moment before standing
  • Walk over to the refreshment area to enjoy some snacks and hydration to replace the volume you lost during donation.
  • Remain at refreshment area for at least fifteen minutes. If you feel light-headed, please tell our staff immediately.
  • We suggest you refrain from strenuous physical activity or heavy lifting for a few hours following donation.
  • Enjoy the rest of your day!

Share your experience!

Feel free to post on social media a photo from your time with us!  We love to hear from our donors.  You can find us on Facebook (@InovaBloodDonor) or Instagram (@InovaBlood). By posting, you may inspire others to give.