Doing Good, One Donation
at a Time
Plasma donors help create a better future for someone every time they visit a center to donate. As a plasma donor, you can make a life-changing difference by helping make high-impact, high-quality therapies possible. Bonus: You’re compensated for your time!
Find a Center
In order to donate, our friendly staff will need a few documents to initiate the process. Be sure to bring a state-issued ID, like a driver’s license, proof of your social security number, and proof of your address. Once these materials are in hand, most adults between the ages of 18 and 65 who weigh at least 110 pounds and are in basic good health are eligible to donate plasma. However, some factors which may exclude you from donating include:
Lack of proper identification
History of hepatitis or HIV
Excessive body piercings or tattoos within the last 12 months
Prolonged residency in Europe
History of cancer
Suspicion of recent ingestion of drugs or alcohol. You must be sober to donate.
Eat a healthy meal within 4 hours of donating and avoid fatty foods for at least 24 hours prior.
Your First Visit
We recognize that as new donors you will have questions about the donation process.
Your first visit is typically around two hours and here is what you can expect:
A BPL staff member will verify that you have all necessary documents to get started.
You’ll be asked to fill out a questionnaire covering your medical history and current health status.
A qualified medical professional will conduct a physical examination.
A photo will be taken for your file.
A small sample of your blood will be taken to check protein and iron levels.
Once the screening process is complete, you will head to the donor floor to relax in your seat while the donation begins.
The plasma component of this sample will be separated and stored. The cellular portion of your blood will then be returned to your body.
You’ve made your first donation and earned your first fee!
After your payment is complete, check in with a team member to schedule your next visit. Did you know it takes two full plasma donations to create a successful lifesaving medicine?
Come Back for Your Next Visit
After extensive safety testing, your plasma is processed into a wide variety of lifesaving therapies that benefit thousands of people every day. Plasma-based therapeutics are used in the treatment of serious disorders such as hemophilia and immune system deficiencies, as well as for victims of shock and burns. Plasma therapies are even used to help during pregnancies and to prevent hemolytic disease in newborn babies.
Your Ongoing Rewards
Plasma donors receive compensation for each donation. This is in recognition of the time you are willing to devote to boosting the availability of this critical medical resource.
Is giving plasma like donating blood?
Donating plasma is similar to giving blood, but easier on your body. The only part of your blood that your body must replace is the plasma itself. The red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets are all returned to you. The blood is removed through a needle inserted into a vein in your arm. It passes into a sterile, self-contained system that separates the plasma from the other components of the blood. This process is called plasmapheresis. The non-plasma components are returned to you through the same needle. At no time is your blood exposed to open air; nor does it leave the sterile, enclosed environment of the plasmapheresis system.
Is BPL equipment clean and sterile?
As you’ve seen in doctors’ offices and hospitals, all of the supplies used in BPL Plasma centers come in sealed, sterile, one-time-use packages. The supplies used in collecting your plasma are disposed of immediately after use, and a fresh package is always used for each donor.
Does it hurt?
Every person is of course different. Most of our donors compare the experience to giving blood, including the discomfort of the initial needle insertion.
How can I entertain myself during visits?
Many of our donors enjoy reading, using a smartphone or tablet, or simply just relaxing and listening to music with headphones in the midst of their busy day.
How do I get started?
No appointment is necessary. To schedule your first plasma donation, come to the BPL Center nearest you. On the day of your first donation, you must provide one or more forms of identification that includes the following information: a photo, a signature, date of birth, and social security number. Please note that EXPIRED or damaged forms of identification are not acceptable. You must also provide proof of a permanent local address within the donor recruitment area of the facility in which you would like to donate.
Is it safe to donate plasma?
Yes. Donating plasma is a low risk procedure with minimal or no side effects. Before a donor is accepted into the BPL Plasma donor program, he or she must pass a physical examination and a survey of their medical history. During each subsequent visit, a staff member checks the donor's vital signs and the donor answers questions about their medical history.
How often can I donate plasma?
The body replaces the plasma removed during the donation process quickly; therefore, healthy individuals can donate as often as twice in a seven-day period, with at least one day between donations.
How long does it take to donate plasma?
On a donor's first visit, the whole process, including a physical examination provided by BPL Plasma medical personnel and the plasma donation, usually takes about two hours. Repeat donors generally spend approximately an hour in the center, with the average plasmapheresis process taking around 45 minutes.
How is the collected plasma used?
Plasma is processed into a wide variety of lifesaving therapies that benefit thousands of people every day. Plasma-based therapeutics are used in the treatment of serious disorders such as hemophilia and immune system deficiencies, and to treat victims of shock and burns.
Why do plasma donors receive money for donating?
Plasma donors spend up to two hours, as often as twice a week, in our centers to help save someone's life or improve the quality of it. We merely offer compensation to our donors for their commitment to the program. For more compensation information, contact your local center directly.
What are the possible side effects?
Occasionally a donor may become light-headed during donation or immediately after. This is usually remedied by rehydration and can usually be prevented by making sure you are well hydrated before donating. Slight bruising at the site of needle placement is possible, though not common.
Am I at risk for disease in donating plasma?
No. For each and every donation, a new, sealed, sterile, one-time-use package is used to collect your plasma. The needle placement site is sterilized. Your blood never leaves the closed system during the plasmapheresis process.
Are there any special nutrition guidelines for donating?
Common sense is your best guideline. Follow a well-balanced diet and eat before coming in to donate. Because you know your body will be losing fluid, drink plenty of water.
Do I need to make an appointment?
No appointment is necessary. To schedule your first plasma donation, come to the BPL Center nearest you.
Can I donate at any age?
Plasma donors need to be between the ages of 18 and 65 to be considered eligible to donate.
How are deferrals determined?
All donation eligibility decisions, including temporary or permanent deferrals, are decided by the center manager. There are no reversals of these decisions.