Preparing for Blood Donation South Carolina: Blood Donation Preparation, Blood Donation Guide | Beaufort Memorial Hospital, SC 29902

Preparing for a Blood Donation

If you have never donated blood before, you are probably wondering what you can expect. You can see the major steps below.

Step 1: Registration

  • Present your photo ID Card.
  • Read about donating blood.

Step 2: Donor Health History and Mini Physical

  • Provide basic health information.
  • Answer questions about past and present health history (information is kept private).
  • Undergo a mini exam to determine if you are able to donate (temperature, blood pressure, heart rate).

Step 3: Hydration Station

  • Drink water or other beverage at the Hydration Station prior to your donation.

Step 4: Donation

  • Sit in comfortable chair/cot near other donors.
  • Answer a few questions and extend donor arm.
  • Squeeze a ball to keep the blood flowing. Once needle is in place, it usually takes less than 10 minutes to draw a unit of blood.
  • Occasionally it may be necessary to lower the upper part of your chair and/or raise your legs.
  • Finish donation, after which the needle will be removed and a bandage applied.

Step 5: Revitalization Station

  • Sit and relax for a few minutes to have a snack and a drink after being escorted to the Revitalization Station.
  • All Done! Enjoy your day. You’ve earned it! You’ve helped save a life!

Step 6: After Donation

  • Avoid strenuous physical activity or heavy lifting for a few hours. If you feel light-headed, lie down until feeling better.


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