We Need You!

Did you know your donation can aid in basic research and clinical therapies designed to treat and cure cancer, degenerative diseases, and immune and genetic disorders? Due to the rapid rise in stem cell research and cellular-based therapies, biotechnology and academic institutions need a reliable source of human-derived biological products. For 40 years, the HemaCare Blood Donor Center has provided tailored blood products for research to the scientific community. By donating, you play an important part in accelerating research and finding a cure or treatment for life-threatening diseases.

HemaCare welcomes donors from various backgrounds and encourages donations year-round. Take a look at our eligibility requirements, go step by step through the donation process, or view our frequently asked questions for quick answers to any questions you may have.

HemaCare’s Donor Compensation

HemaCare compensates donors as a thank you for time spent donating. Compensation is based on the type of collection performed. For specific donor compensation amounts, please contact us.

We value our donor relationships and our friendly staff is here to make sure your donor experience is comfortable and enjoyable. In fact, many of our donors have been donating with HemaCare for years! See what some of our donors have to say about us!

Eligibility Requirements

In order to donate you must meet the requirements listed below.
Please note that this is not a complete list; other eligibility factors will apply.

  • Be in good health and feeling well
  • Be at least 18 years old
  • Weigh at least 110 pounds
  • Are not pregnant
  • Possess a valid government-issued photo ID (Example: Driver’s License, Military ID, etc.)

Do NOT donate if any of the following apply to you:

  • Have been diagnosed with HIV/AIDS, Hepatitis B, or Hepatitis C
  • Have ever used needles to take drugs, steroids, or anything not prescribed by your doctor
  • Are a male who has had sexual contact with another male, even once, since 1977
  • Have ever taken money, drugs, or any other form of payment for sex since 1977
  • Have had sexual contact in the past 12 months with anyone described above
  • Have had syphilis or gonorrhea in the past 12 months
  • In the past 12 months have been in juvenile detention, lockup, jail, or prison for more than 72 hours
  • Have lived in, or visited the United Kingdom, which includes England, Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales, the
    Isle of Mann, or Channel Islands from 1980-1996 for a total of 3 months or more
  • Have spent 5 years or more (total) in Europe since 1980
  • Have visited a malarial-endemic country within the last year

Donor Safety is Our Number One Priority

Donors can be assured that their donations will be performed by our knowledgeable staff of registered nurses and phlebotomists under the direction of a licensed physician. Certain types of donations, such as bone marrow collections, will be performed by a licensed healthcare practitioner. Collections are conducted following stringent regulations and requirements as developed by the AABB and accepted by the FDA and State of California.

All donations involve complete anonymity for the donor. HemaCare utilizes randomly generated numbers to track products and there are no identifiers that can be traced back to the donor.

Types of Donations

Whole blood is comprised of four main components; plasma, red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets.

Appointment Time: Approximately 1 hour

Donation Process: Whole blood is collected from an arm vein and is performed by a nurse or phlebotomist.

A nurse or phlebotomist will cleanse and sterilize an area of the arm from which the blood will be drawn. The blood will flow through sterile tubing into a donation bag. The entire blood collection procedure takes about 7-10 minutes while approximately one pint of blood is collected. All materials used during the donation are pre-packaged, sterile, and disposable; once used, it is thrown away and destroyed.

Bone marrow is the spongy tissue found within the hollow interior of long bones such as the hip and thigh bones. The bone marrow contains stems cells that produce the body’s blood cells, which include white blood cells, red blood cells, and platelets.

Appointment Time: Approximately 2 hours

Donation Process: Bone marrow is removed from the pelvic bone and is performed by a licensed healthcare provider.

Donors are positioned on their belly and receive anesthesia to feel no pain during the donation. Liquid marrow is withdrawn from the back of the pelvic bone using a hollow needle. As the liquid marrow is removed, donors may experience a brief period of minimal to moderate discomfort. The entire procedure, once preparation is complete, typically takes 10–15 minutes.

White blood cells are one of the four main components of whole blood; red blood cells, platelets, and plasma make up the other three components. White blood cells are the body’s primary defense against infection; they have the ability to move out of the blood stream and reach tissue being invaded.

Appointment Time: Approximately 6 hours

Donation Process: White blood cells, particularly the mononuclear type of white blood cells, are collected from an arm vein by leukapheresis.

Leukapheresis is the process of removing whole blood from the donor, separating the blood into its components, keeping the white blood cells, and then returning the remaining blood components to the donor.

A nurse or phlebotomist will cleanse and sterilize an area of the arm from which the blood will be drawn. The blood is sent through sterile tubing into a centrifuge located in a cell-separator machine. The machine spins the blood to separate the white blood cells from the other components. The white blood cells are collected and the remaining components are returned via the other arm. Only a small portion of blood is in the machine at any time (less than a cup). The entire procedure may take approximately 4 hours and is not uncomfortable.

White blood cells are one of the four main components of whole blood; red blood cells, platelets, and plasma make up the other three components. Mobilized white blood cells include stem cells mobilized from the bone marrow after injection with an FDA-approved mobilizing agent. These stem cells increase the total number of cells available in your blood and are a critical component in research studies.

Appointment Time: Approximately 1 hour for screening, 30 minutes for treatment (2-5 times on successive days), and 4.5-5 hours for white blood cell collection – 1 or 2 successive days = total of 2-6 successive day appointments

Treatment Process: You will receive the injection per the required protocol.

Donation Process: White blood cells, particularly the mononuclear type of white blood cells, are collected from an arm vein by leukapheresis.

Leukapheresis is the process of removing whole blood from the donor, separating the blood into its components, keeping the white blood cells, and then returning the remaining blood components to the donor.

A nurse or phlebotomist will cleanse and sterilize an area of the arm from which the blood will be drawn. The blood is sent through sterile tubing into a centrifuge located in a cell-separator machine. The machine spins the blood to separate the white blood cells from the other components. The white blood cells are collected and the remaining components are returned via the other arm. Only a small portion of blood is in the machine at any time (less than a cup). The entire procedure may take approximately 4.5-5 hours and is not uncomfortable.

Tips for a Successful Donation

  • In the days before your donation, eat healthy, iron-rich foods such as spinach, red meat, fish, poultry, beans, iron-fortified cereals and raisins. This will help maintain a healthy iron level. The number one reason for deferrals is anemia
  • Get a good night’s sleep
  • At least 3 hours before donating, eat a balanced meal and avoid fatty foods, such as hamburgers, fries, or ice cream
  • Drink an extra 16 oz. of water and fluids before the donation; you can be deferred for dehydration
  • Don’t forget to bring a valid government-issued photo ID, a list of medications you are taking, and a list of places you have visited outside of the U.S. in the past 3 years
  • Wear clothing with short sleeves or sleeves that can be raised above the elbow
  • If you have a preference of arm or vein that you like the phlebotomist to use for your donation, let them know
  • Relax, listen to music, talk to others, or simply just catch up on some reading on our comfortable donor lounge chairs designed specifically for apheresis donations, which are equipped for our donors to surf the internet or watch movies
  • Enjoy an assortment of refreshments in our canteen area immediately after donating
  • Drink plenty of fluids over the next 24-48 hours to replenish any fluids you lost during donation
  • Avoid strenuous physical activity or heavy lifting for about 24 hours after donation
  • If you feel light headed, lie down, preferably with feet elevated, until the feeling passes
  • If something doesn’t feel right, call the Donor Center’s toll-free number provided to you after your
    donation
  • Enjoy your day and know that you have made a positive difference!

Donating: Step by Step

We’re here to walk you through each step of the donating process.

1. Contact Us

Contact us for an appointment. Once your appointment request is received our donor recruitment coordinator will contact you within 24 hours and conduct a pre-screening phone interview, asking basic health questions.

2. On-site Health Screening

If you qualify to donate based on the pre-screen, a HemaCare representative will coordinate an on-site health screening where your weight, blood pressure, and pulse are measured and your veins are assessed. We will also obtain a blood sample to see if your cell count falls within normal range.

3. Donate

After we determine you meet the eligibility requirements, we will contact you and inform you of the variety of donation options you qualify for. If you agree to participate in the program, we will schedule your donation appointment. Please remember to bring a valid government-issued photo ID (example: Driver License, Military ID, etc.) to your appointment.

4. Post Donation

Relax in HemaCare’s canteen area and enjoy refreshments while you recover.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Does HemaCare Do?

HemaCare is a blood services company serving the scientific community for 40 years. HemaCare supports research and clinical trials, by collecting human-derived biological products from donors and supplying these donated blood products and cells to scientists to assist in the development of potentially life-saving therapies and treatments.

What are the qualification requirements to donate blood or bone marrow?

At minimum, all potential donors must:

  • be at least 18 years old
  • weigh at least 110 lbs.
  • be in good health and feeling well
  • not be pregnant

Qualifications vary for each donation. Contact us to see if you qualify and for what option.

I signed up to join your donor pool. What now?

Once you have submitted your contact information, a HemaCare donor recruitment coordinator will contact you within 24 hours to qualify you as a donor and discuss, in detail, your next steps.

  • First, there will be a five-minute telephone screening interview with the HemaCare donor recruitment coordinator. The coordinator will ask you general questions about your health and medical history.
  • If you qualify to donate based on the pre-screen, we will schedule you to come to HemaCare for a 30-minute in-person New Donor Screening Appointment where you will fill out a questionnaire related to your current medical condition, health history, and lifestyle. We will also perform a brief physical examination to check your blood pressure, pulse, temperature, weight, assess your veins, and take a small blood sample to see if your cell count falls within normal range. You will not donate during this appointment.
  • After we determine you meet the eligibility requirements, we will contact you and inform you of the variety of donation options you qualify for. If you agree to participate in the program, we will schedule your donation appointment.
What should I bring at the time of donation?
  • A valid government-issued photo ID (driver’s license, passport, etc.)
  • A list of medications you are taking (our medical interviewer needs to know what medications you are taking or have recently taken)
  • A list of places you have visited outside of the U.S. in the past 3 years
  • A friend to donate with you!
I am taking certain medications, can I still donate?

Many medications are acceptable. Consult your physician or contact us if you have questions about your eligibility to donate.

What kinds of questions will be asked when I come to donate?

You will be asked questions about your health and whether you are at risk for certain diseases including AIDS, hepatitis, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, and West Nile virus.

Will I be compensated for donating for research?

Yes, you will be compensated for your time spent donating. This compensation is based on the type of collection performed. For specific donor compensation amounts, please contact us to discuss an initial donor assessment.

What tests are done on blood?

Blood is tested for hepatitis B and C, HIV, syphilis, Chagas Disease, West Nile Virus, HTLV, and cytomegalovirus. In addition, it is tested for ABO group (blood type) and Rh type.

If I have a positive blood test, how will I be notified?

You will receive a letter from HemaCare Donor Center. In some cases you will also receive a phone call.

How long does it take to donate?

It varies based on donation type. Click here to view our various donation types.

Can I get a disease from donating?

No, all of the materials used during your donation are pre-packaged, sterile, and disposable. Once they are used, they are thrown away and destroyed.

If I was deferred once before, am I still ineligible to donate?

No. Please contact the HemaCare Donor Center for more information. We are always looking for healthy donors and deferred donors as scientists are always in need of various blood components for their studies.

How will my blood or bone marrow be used?

Biotechnology and academic institutions worldwide are researching human cells to find new ways to treat and cure disease, such as various cancers, diabetes, HIV, among others. Any product collected from you will be used for research purposes only.

Will you release my contact information or use my identity?

No, ALL information you give to HemaCare is strictly confidential and will not be disclosed or released to any scientist, other company, or individual. All donations involve complete anonymity for the donor. We utilize randomly generated numbers to track products and there are no identifiers that can be traced back to you. Only your age, gender, ethnicity, blood type and other non-identifying information may be reported to the scientist using your blood or cells for research. We are dedicated to keeping your information private and confidential.

What Are Our Donors Saying About Us?

“Once you’re there, it feels like you’re part of a friendly family environment. Thanks HemaCare staff!”
HemaCare Donor
“The front office staff is always so grateful to me for coming in when I donate; they always make me feel appreciated.”
HemaCare Donor
“HemaCare is awesome! The staff is great and the nurses are awesome. Thank you to all the people working at HemaCare for making blood platelet donations worthwhile.”
HemaCare Donor
“The receptionists and nurses are all very friendly and pleasant to be around. They make the donation process very pleasant.”
HemaCare Donor
“Great job! Great team! Great experience!”
HemaCare Donor
“Everyone here is very nice and makes sure I am comfortable coming in and going out.”
HemaCare Donor
“Very happy with the service and feel well informed at all times.”
HemaCare Donor
“Front office has always been excellent. Choice of movies is quite good!”
HemaCare Donor
“The nurses are all great staff members and kind/gentle when they are working on me.”
HemaCare Donor
“Every time I go donate, I have a great experience. Everybody from the front desk to the phlebotomist are professional and exceptional.”
HemaCare Donor

Our Location

HemaCare Blood Donor Center
8500 Balboa Boulevard
Northridge, CA 91325

Proceed to Door “C”.

Phone: (800) 347-4927

Directions from:
405 South. Exit Roscoe Blvd, turn right. Turn right onto Balboa Blvd. Turn right onto Napa St. Turn right into 2nd driveway entrance.
405 North. Exit Roscoe Blvd, turn left. Turn right onto Balboa Blvd. Turn right onto Napa St. Turn right into 2nd driveway entrance.