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Donating blood after getting the COVID-19 vaccine

COVID-19 vaccine
Posted at 2:51 PM, Apr 26, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-26 17:15:06-04

ORLANDO, Fla. — Is it safe to donate blood after getting a COVID-19 vaccine? The American Red Cross and OneBlood say yes.

If you’re feeling well and have no symptoms after getting the COVID-19 vaccine, OneBlood says if you’re eligible it’s important to donate blood. But how soon you can donate depends on what vaccine you received.

These days the big red bus is looking for new places to attract potential blood donors.

"We still are not able to go to a lot of these places that we used to go to such as high schools, colleges, movie theaters. The amount of people that you used to see at these locations are not there," said Susan Forbes, the senior vice president of corporate communications for OneBlood.

Along with new locations, OneBlood is asking new questions, the main one when you go to donate blood, have you received the COVID-19 vaccine and which one?

"There is no wait period to donate after receiving the Pfizer or Moderna. It’s the two-week wait period for the Johnson & Johnson to be a blood donor. So as long as you’re feeling well, you can come in and donate," Forbes said.

Forbes said if you’ve had COVID-19 though and you receive the vaccine, OneBlood can’t collect plasma from you just yet.

"It's not that they are not eligible to donate convalescent plasma. It's that FDA is requiring certain things for blood centers to do to be able to accept those donations and it’s not a flip of a switch," Forbes said.

If you do get the COVID-19 vaccine, donating blood is one way you’ll find out if you’ve built antibodies. Forbes added that donating blood after getting a shot will not impact the efficacy of the COVID-19 vaccine.

"Those antibodies remain in your blood and they are also in other parts of your body as well such as your lymph nodes. So donating blood or platelets or plasma is not going to impact the fact that you have the antibodies. So there is no concern there," Forbes said.

For more information from OneBlood about the COVID-19 vaccine and blood donations, click here.