NAVIGATION

Blood Supply and Donations in Beijing

Beijing United Family hospital (BJU)has its own Blood Bank and maintains a steady supply of most types of blood on site at BJU.   All blood products of BJU come from Beijing Tongzhou Blood Center, which have been screened for infectious diseases such as AIDS, hepatitis B, hepatitis C and syphilis etc.

Thank you for considering donating blood. Generally, there is enough blood available in  Beijing Tongzhou Blood Center for most blood types. Despite the pandemic while blood donation in the city is running low, to date blood remains adequately available.  

I want to donate blood /platelets. How can I do that? Donating blood is always free.  Donors can donate whole blood at  the donation sites on the street organized by  Beijing Red Cross Blood Center or Beijing Tongzhou Blood Center. Platelets should be donated at the Beijing Tongzhou Blood Center (#21 Tongzhu Road).  For non-Chinese speakers wishing to donate blood, for assistance, please contact patientservices@ufh.com.cn  or lab@ufh.com.cn.

Is there supply of rare blood types (e.g. “O negative”) in Beijing in an emergency?
Ordinarily, yes. BJU patients with an upcoming procedure and with Rh negative or any type of blood can also donate their own blood to be stored at the BJU Blood Bank to be ready for the day of the procedure. Patients should discuss this procedure with their doctor.  Beijing Tongzhou Blood Center can provide frozen Rh negative RBCs for urgent transfusion Rh negative patients.

How is the blood I receive at BJU prepared and stored?
Blood donated at Beijing Tongzhou Blood Center is fully tested and processed.  Blood received in BJU from the Beijing Tongzhou Blood Center can be made available within approximately 60 minutes. Alternatively, some blood can be kept in the BJU Blood Bank upon a physician’s request.   BJU blood bank is a CAP (College of American Pathologists) accredited laboratory.

Who is eligible to donate blood / platelets?
Please read the Donor Health Criteria.very carefully and in detail. You must reply NO to all the points in order to be eligible. In addition, donors must be in good health criteria, be 18-55 years old, weigh over 45 kg (female) or 55 kg (male), have not donated blood within the last 6 months, not taken any medication, have eaten healthily to avoid excess fat in blood, and carry their official photo ID. Those returning to mainland China must wait 30 days from the date of arriving in China before being eligible to donate. Those who have received the Covid-19 vaccine,  are eligible for donation 48 hours after receiving the first and/or the second dose of the vaccine. At the time of drafting this information, the covid test is not necessary. Just showing the health kit with green color is necessary.

For platelets donations,the donor must wait 3 months after blood donation before donating. If the donor donated platelets, the donor needs to wait 14 days before becoming eligible again.

Blood Drives and Donation

If you’re thinking about donating blood in China, you may have many questions. Find your questions answered along with the dates to our blood drives below.

United Family Healthcare (UFH) invites you to come give the gift of life to those in need:

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Q.      How does the blood get from donor to recipient?

Blood_Drive

Q.     Is donating blood safe?

A.      Donating blood is a safe and sterile process, conducted the same way as in the U.S. Needles and bags used to collect blood are used only once and then discarded, making the spread of any infection to the donor impossible.

Q.     Am I an eligible donor?

A.  An official list of the full health criteria for donating blood in Beijing, is available for download here: Donor Health Criteria.

  • In addition to the health criteria, the donors must meet the following general criteria:
  1. Be 18-55 years old.
  2. Have not donated blood within the last 6 months.
  3. Weigh over 45 kg (female) or 55 kg (male).
  • The day before donation, please eat healthy and light to avoid excessive fat buildup in your blood, which may result in your disqualification for donation.
  • Bring you official photo ID or passport.

Q.     I have some doubts about giving blood because I have been exposed to diseases (such as malaria, dengue fever, “mad cow” disease, etc) in the past or am taking a certain medication. Am I still eligible?

A.      Please refer these questions to patientservices@ufh.com.cn or lab@ufh.com.cn.

Q.     If I’m not allowed to donate blood in the U.S., can I give blood in China?

A.      The American Red Cross and the Beijing Blood Center have slightly different criteria for blood donations. You may be eligible to donate in one country and not another.

Q.     Why is Rh negative blood special?

A.     Only three out of every 1000 (0.3%) Han Chinese have Rh negative blood. In Western countries, this blood type is much more common, present in up to 15% of the population. Although all blood donors are welcome to give blood, we hope that those with Rh negative blood will help to increase the supply of that blood type in Beijing.

Q.     How can I ensure a pleasant donation experience?

A.      Ensure that you are well rested, fed and hydrated before donating. Do not eat greasy food in 24 hours before your donation. After your donation, have a light snack and plenty of fluids. Continue with your daily activities, but avoid heavy lifting or strenuous exercise for the remainder of the day

Q.     How long does it take to donate blood?

A.      The whole process takes about 30 to 40 minutes. It starts with registration, questions, a mini-physical examination (vital signs, weight, hemoglobin, blood typing) and blood screenings. The actual donation takes around 5 to 10 minutes.

Q.     How much blood is taken? Will it make me weak?

A.     In China, you can choose to donate either 200 or 400mL, less than 10% of the body’s total blood volume (blood donations in the U.S. i closer to 500 mL). The vast majority of people feel fine during and after their donation. A very small percentage of people may experience temporary dizziness, but some rest and fluids will help you recover quickly. Your body will replace the lost fluids within 24 hours.

Q.     What do I do if I want to donate again after this blood drive?

A.  Leave your contact information with Beijing United Family Hospital and Clinics (BJU) personnel. They will inform you of future blood drives.

Q.     Who organizes these blood drives?

A.      BJU works with several community partners to organize four to six blood drives a year. This is done in conjunction with the local (district-based) Blood Administration Office. The Beijing Tongzhou Blood Center handles all blood collection in this part of Beijing. They provide professional staff, supplies and the bloodmobile. The blood that is collected will go to the Beijing Blood Center in Tongzhou.

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