Does vaccination against Covid-19 prevent blood donation?

Does vaccination against Covid-19 prevent blood donation?

It’s a now deleted tweet…but had time to share it several thousand times. In a message posted on January 22 on Twitter, actress Veronique Genest posted another tweet: “The Red Cross reports that plasma donations from Vax (sic) are now rejected”.

Then the actress asked this question: “So, a vaccinator cannot donate blood… Curious, why?”

Véronique Genest's tweet (Twitter screen capture)

The French Blood Foundation (EFS) quickly challenged this statement by posting a series of messages on the same social network.

Upon contact, EFS assures that both vaccinated and non-vaccinated people can indeed donate blood at any time. Whether it is about donating blood, platelets or plasma, vaccination status is of no importance, her website also indicates. EFS also states that no health card or vaccination card is required at the entrance to the collection points. “We welcome all donors who comply with the barrier gestures, including wearing masks which remain mandatory.”, remember the French Blood Foundation.

Donating blood should only be delayed if you test positive for Covid-19. It becomes possible 14 days after a positive test. If you haven’t been tested but you think you have the virus, you can donate blood 14 days after your symptoms have passed.

There are many vaccines that prevent blood donation immediately. For BCG, yellow fever or measles for example, it is necessary to wait four weeks before being able to donate blood. EFS explains that these are live attenuated vaccines. “As with the Covid vaccines, which do not contain live viruses capable of replication and do not pose a risk to recipients of blood products, there is no time limit for inactivated vaccines (including vaccines against influenza, tetanus, pertussis, polio…) “EFS details. In the latter cases, blood can be donated immediately after vaccination.

As EFS also explains in other tweets, and taking explanations from our fellow real-life AFP, the video shared by Véronique Genest and other netizens never allows us to confirm that donating blood is prohibited for vaccines in other countries. This video presented as an American video actually refers to donating convalescent plasma.

The researchers had a moment of hope that the plasma of people who had recovered from Covid-19 could make it possible to treat other patients with Covid. This video only indicates that this is not the case. However, both vaccinated and unvaccinated plasma can be used for many other patients, particularly those with hemophilia, victims of severe burns or even patients with some rare diseases.

In short, whether or not you have been vaccinated against Covid-19, your blood is welcome. EFS currently has 80,000 bags of red blood cells in stock, while 100,000 spare bags are needed to ensure all the needs of all hospitals over a two-week period.

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