Fact or Fiction: Blood donations after getting your COVID-19 vaccine

Source: Live 5
Updated: Mar. 28, 2021 at 11:42 PM EDT
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CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - Leaders with the South Carolina American Red Cross say getting a coronavirus vaccine does not largely impact when someone can give blood.

Over the past few weeks, Ben Williamson with the Palmetto SC region of the American Red Cross said the organization has received many questions about the impact of getting a vaccine on giving blood.

“This is becoming more and more of a question that we’re getting,” Williamson said. “We’ve seen a little more than a 15 percent decrease this month in blood appointments across the state.”

Williamson said for the major vaccine brands, there is no wait time for giving blood, as long as the person feels healthy.

“Pfizer, Moderna, Johnson and Johnson, AstraZeneca, none of those have deferral times,” Williamson said. “So if you get it and you’re feeling healthy and well, you can give blood.”

For people who have been vaccinated and want to give blood, the Red Cross asks donors to know which vaccine they received, otherwise there could be a wait.

“The only thing that we’re asking donors to do is to know which type of vaccine they got,” Williamson said. “If you don’t know the vaccine when you show up to give blood, we’ll have to defer you for two weeks.”

He also want’s people to know that giving blood will not affect how well their vaccine works in protecting the body from the coronavirus.

“This vaccine, similar to other vaccines that we’ve had, measles and others that we’ve known, it generates an immune response,” Williamson said. “And your immune system is not impacted by blood donations.”

Those interested in donating blood can find more information on guidelines online here.

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