How to Donate Blood

To donate blood, individuals must:

  • Be in good health.
  • Be at least 18 years old.
  • Not have suffered from Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, or HIV.
  • Feel healthy on the day of donation.
  • Weigh at least 50 kg (110 lbs).

Blood Donation Process

The blood donation process at PFS begins with a health screening and mini physical examination, ensuring donors meet the eligibility criteria. This includes checking the donor's pulse, blood pressure, and temperature, alongside a health questionnaire. The donation itself is conducted by skilled professionals, making it a safe and quick procedure. Post-donation, individuals are carefully monitored and offered refreshments to aid in their recovery. Each donor is appreciated with certificates and souvenirs, recognizing their vital contribution. PFS's process underscores the importance of donor safety while facilitating the life-saving gift of blood donation.

“she has served in various capacities within Pakistan's military hospital laboratories, blood banks, and medical schools. Notably, her roles have included Commandant of the Armed Forces Institute of Transfusion, Associate Professor of Pathology, and CEO & Technical Consultant of P-Firstsolutions Blood Center. Her work, marked by leadership in developing national blood policy and pioneering technology in transfusion services, alongside her academic contributions in teaching, curriculum development, and supervision, highlights her commitment to enhancing healthcare standards. ”

Nuzhat Mushahid
Leadership History

  • Pre-Donation Screening:Before donating, individuals complete a health questionnaire to evaluate their medical history and identify any risk factors. They also undergo a mini physical examination that includes checks of pulse, blood pressure, and temperature to ensure they are ready for donation.
  • Types of Donations: There are two main types of donations. Whole Blood Donation is the most common and versatile, catering to a broad spectrum of medical needs. Apheresis Donation is a specialized form of donation, focusing on the collection of platelets or plasma for patients with specific requirements, such as those with antibodies against platelets or in need of plasma-derived medicinal products.
  • Donation Frequency: Donors can give whole blood every 90 to 120 days, up to four times a year. Apheresis platelet donations are allowed a maximum of twice a week, with at least a 48-hour interval between donations, and not exceeding 24 times a year. Source plasma donations can be made once every two days, but not more than twice within a seven-day period.
  • Donation Process: During the donation process, donors sit comfortably in a donation chair. Skilled staff draw blood using sterile equipment, a procedure that lasts about 8-10 minutes for whole blood donations. After donating, individuals are monitored briefly for any immediate reactions to ensure their well-being.
  • Post-Donation Care: Following the donation, individuals are offered refreshments to aid in their recovery. They also receive instructions on care for the donation site and signs of possible complications to monitor, ensuring their health and safety post-donation.
  • Benefits to Donors: Donating blood is a profoundly satisfying act that contributes to saving lives. Donors benefit from a free health check-up before donation, motivation to lead a healthier lifestyle, a potential reduction in cardiac disease risk, and the stimulation of bone marrow to produce new red blood cells, rejuvenating the body.

Tests Performed on Blood

It's essential to understand that the safety and efficacy of the blood supply are paramount concerns for blood donation centers like PFS. To ensure this, several critical tests are performed on each unit of donated blood to safeguard recipients and maximize the therapeutic benefits.

  • Infectious Disease Testing: Every donation is rigorously tested for a range of infectious diseases to prevent the transmission of conditions such as HIV, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, syphilis, and other bloodborne pathogens. These tests are highly sensitive and specific, designed to detect the presence of viruses, bacteria, and other infectious agents that could pose risks to recipients.
  • Blood Typing and Compatibility: To ensure the safe transfusion of blood, it's vital to match the donor's blood type with that of the recipient. Blood typing tests determine the donor's blood group (A, B, AB, or O) and Rh factor (positive or negative). This information is critical for preventing adverse reactions in patients receiving blood transfusions.
  • Antibody Screening:This test is conducted to identify any potentially harmful antibodies in the donor's blood that could cause adverse reactions in the recipient. Antibody screening helps in matching blood for transfusions that require a high degree of compatibility, such as for patients with conditions like sickle cell disease, who may require multiple transfusions.
  • Leukocyte Reduction: While not a test, leukocyte reduction is a process that filters and removes white blood cells from blood products. This step is taken to decrease the chance of febrile non-hemolytic transfusion reactions in recipients, making transfusions safer.

Do You Want to Setup a Blood Camp?

This simple 5-step guide takes you through the whole process.

  • Find a Place:The first step to planning a blood drive is to find a suitable location, such as a public square or college or university setting or social gathering place or a community center. A few points to keep in mind: a comfortable waiting area for donors, likely weather conditions on the day and easy access to parking or public transport.
  • Contact PFS Blood Center: Hosting a blood drive is a partnership - between your community and PFS Blood Center. Get in touch to schedule your drive, and find out specific information for your area.
  • Do Your Research: As the blood donation drive host, you're responsible for setting up shop. That means providing equipment such as tables, chairs and trash cans, along with drinks and refreshments.The PFS also has a bunch of handy tips and toolkits available.
  • Recruit Volunteers: You'll need help on the day of the blood drive, so once you've got a date and place set it's time to recruit some volunteers. To make things easier, add a note in your community newspaper and take advantage of relevant social media channels.
  • Advertise the Blood Drive: Promote the event via SMS, social media, email, and flyers to ensure community participation.

"Every drop you give is a heartbeat saved. Be the reason someone lives to see another day. Your donation is their hope. #GiveLife, #BeAHero"

Nuzhat Mushahid, CEO at P-First

How We Value Our Blood Heroes?

  • PFS staff receive thorough training to assist blood donors throughout the donation process.
  • Donors are closely monitored for any adverse reactions during and after donation.
  • Refreshments are provided to donors to help them recuperate post-donation.
  • Donors are honored with certificates and souvenirs as a token of gratitude, commemorating their life-saving contribution.
  • Blood screening reports are shared with donors via message and WhatsApp, ensuring they are informed about their health status.
  • PFS communicates with donors via messages to inform them when their donated blood contributes to saving lives, reinforcing the impact of their gift.