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Food and Drug Administration and Compliance Issues
Thursday, March 19, 2020
Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update: Blood Donations
Statement attributed to Peter Marks, M.D., Ph.D., director of the FDA’s Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research.
The nation’s blood supply requires a steady supply of donors who generously donate millions of units of potentially life-saving blood and blood components each year. Every two seconds, a patient needs a blood transfusion.
At this time the number of blood donations has been dramatically reduced due to the implementation of social distancing and the cancellation of blood drives. We fully support President Trump’s Coronavirus Guidelines for America, which includes recommendations to avoid social gatherings of more than 10 people and the need to practice good hygiene, like hand washing.
We also recognize that maintaining adequate levels of our nation’s blood supply is critical. People who donate blood are equivalent to those people who are working in a critical infrastructure industry. In volunteering to do so, they are contributing immeasurably to the public health of our nation. In order to ensure that blood is available to those who need it most, it is important for healthy individuals who are able to donate to take the time to do so.
Blood donation centers can facilitate the safe donation of blood because they are skilled in infection control practices and already have procedures in place to prevent the spread of infections. Blood donation centers always take steps to prevent staff and donors who are not ...