Published by Kirby Winn on Tuesday, August 2, 2022 in News Releases

ImpactLife will reinstate more than 5000 potential donors who were previously deferred from blood donation under donor eligibility guidance that was recently updated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Following new guidance issued by the FDA in July, ImpactLife has removed indefinite deferrals for 5126 potential donors who were previously deferred from blood donation due to travel or residence in the United Kingdom, France, or Ireland. The deferral was related to a theoretical risk of transmitting Cruetzfeldt-Jakob Disease (also known as Mad Cow Disease) to blood transfusion recipients. FDA has determined this is no longer a concern for donors who have previously lived in the United Kingdom and other European countries.

The new guidance from FDA removes the deferral recommendations associated with geographic risk of Mad Cow Disease for time spent in the United Kingdom (1980 – 1996); time spent in France and Ireland (1980 – 2001); and receipt of a blood transfusion in the U.K., France or Ireland (1980 – present). ImpactLife is now reaching out to 5126 potential donors who were previously deferred under the former eligibility criteria. Individuals who have questions about their eligibility for blood donation are asked to call ImpactLife at (800) 757-5401 or see www.bloodcenter.org/eligibility.

“It’s very exciting,” said Pete Lux, Vice President, Donor and Patient Services. “We don’t get big changes like this very often where we get to welcome back so many donors who were previously deferred.”

The opportunity to expand the blood center’s donor base comes during a challenging time for our region’s blood supply. In recent weeks, the blood supply has been as low as just a two- to three-day supply for type O-negative and O-positive red blood cells. ImpactLife urges all eligible and potential donors to schedule appointments for donation during the first weeks of August. To schedule, call ImpactLife at (800) 747-5401, visit www.bloodcenter.org, or download the ImpactLife mobile app at www.bloodcenter.org/app.

ImpactLife Donor Promotions

$10 e-gift card (or donor’s choice of 500 bonus points for ImpactLife Donor Rewards Store)

  • Voucher provided to all donors giving at ImpactLife mobile blood drives (locations) through Sept. 11

$20 e-gift card (or donor’s choice of 500 bonus points for ImpactLife Donor Rewards Store)

  • Voucher provided to all donors giving at ImpactLife Donor Centers (locations) through Sept. 11

$25 e-gift card

  • Voucher provided to all donors giving a Double Red Cell donation or a platelet donation for at least third time with ImpactLife (locations) through Sept. 11

$50 e-gift card

  • Voucher provided to all donors giving platelet donations for the first or second time (locations) through Sept. 11

Donor Rewards Points

  • Provided with all donations, with the value based on donation procedure type; Double and Triple Point Days apply (for more information, see: ImpactLife Donor Rewards)

About ImpactLife

ImpactLife is a not-for-profit community organization providing blood services to 124 hospitals in Illinois, Iowa, Missouri, and Wisconsin, as well as resource sharing partners across the country. Services extend from southcentral Wisconsin to St. Louis, Missouri and from Danville, Illinois to Chariton, Iowa. (See a map of the ImpactLife service region.) ImpactLife operates 22 Donor Centers and holds approximately 5000 mobile blood drives annually to provide blood components needed for patient transfusions at hospitals throughout our region. For more information, see www.bloodcenter.org and find us @impactlifeblood on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, TikTok, Twitter, Snapchat, and YouTube.

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About The Author

Kirby Winn

Kirby Winn serves as Manager, Public Relations for ImpactLife. He enjoys working with media across the blood center's service region to share the stories of patients who have been helped by the generous volunteers who support our mission.

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