A center team member will greet you at the reception desk and get you started on the initial paperwork. They will also check the required documents you brought with you to make sure everything is in order.
To make sure plasma donation is right for you, a trained Grifols center team member checks your vital signs and takes a blood sample (a finger prick). You’ll also meet with a certified medical professional who’ll ask you questions and conduct a physical in a private exam room. This is a good time to ask any questions you have about the donation process. And if you choose to donate regularly, you’ll be asked to take this physical once a year.
One of our highly trained phlebotomists (aka, medical technicians trained in drawing blood) guides you to a sanitized donor bed on the donor floor. They make sure you’re comfortable, and then connect you to the plasmapheresis machine using a single needle. Here, the machine automatically separates your plasma from your blood cells, collects the plasma, then returns your red blood cells back to you. Then, you’ll receive saline fluids to restore some of the water that was removed during the process. The whole process is done through a single needle.
While side effects associated with the plasmapheresis process are uncommon, it’s important to follow the instructions of the phlebotomist and ensure that you drink plenty of fluids, eat a healthy meal and refrain from strenuous activities for the remainder of the day. Note that you’ll be assigned an ATM card before leaving the center. Your compensation will be automatically added after each successful visit.
As a first-time donor, we can only use your plasma to make lifesaving medicines after you’ve donated twice. After your second donation, we can accept your plasma donations regularly. We ask you to come in for your second donation within six months. If you don’t return for a second donation, the FDA requires that we dispose of your first donation and you’ll have to repeat the health questionnaire and physical at your next visit.