Giving back: donating blood in Mexico
You will probably feel a quick pinch when the needle goes in. Before you donate, you will have a test to check your hemoglobin level. The whole process—including answering questions and having a short exam—takes up to an hour. Tuesday, Sept. 19 saw a 7.1 magnitude earthquake hit Mexico City. The quake claimed over 200 lives, and it brought down over 40 buildings.
- Calica – No deferral if you did not travel outside of the heavily traveled tourist areas or into the jungle/rural areas.
- The health professional will clean the arm you will use to give blood.
- The needle and bag used to collect blood are sterile and prepackaged.
- In response to the mosquito-borne Zika outbreak, the American Red Cross is asking people to avoid donating blood if they traveled to Latin America or the Caribbean in the past 28 days.
Studies have shown that variant Creutzfeld Jacob Disease , also known as “mad cow” disease, can be transmitted through blood transfusion. However, there is no test for vCJD in humans that can be used to screen blood donors and to protect the blood supply. Therefore, if you spent long periods of time in countries where mad cow disease is found, you may not eligible to donate blood. Blood donations are not tested for malaria because there is no sensitive blood test available yet. If you have traveled or lived in a country with a high risk of malaria, a waiting period may be required before you can donate blood.
Why There Are Travel Related Restrictions for Donating Blood
If you’ve traveled to any of them in the list below, this may determine whether or not you are eligible or not to donate your blood. Residency in certain countries or geographic regions or travel to those areas may make you ineligible to donate. For our non-Mexican readers, keep in mind that the blood types that are common for locals may not be the same blood types that are common for Gringos. You might have a blood type that is rare in this region and very much needed. Here in our part of Mexico blood donation is minimal, which causes blood stocks to be very low.
These are important in keeping the body alert and functioning properly. Losing some of these substances through plasma donation can lead to an electrolyte imbalance. This can result in dizziness, fainting, and lightheadedness. Roughly 220,000 Minnesotans travel to Mexico each year, the majority to beach destinations, said Javier Alejandro Magaa Maya of the Mexican consulate in St. Paul.
Our restaurant friend already had asked his friends and family to donate, with only a small amount of them meeting the strict criteria. After asking everyone that they knew, they were short one donor and we felt the need to try and help. If you have traveled or lived in a malaria-risk country, we may require a waiting period before you can donate blood. Wait 3 months after returning from a trip to an area where malaria is found. Wait 3 years after living more than 5 years in a country or countries where malaria is found. Blood and bleeding diseases or issues will often disqualify you from donating blood.
Blood donation means giving some of your blood so that it can be used to help someone else. Donated blood helps people who have lost blood in an accident. It also helps people who have an illness such as cancer, anemia, sickle cell disease, or hemophilia. Information on blood donation in Puerto Rico is not yet being widely disseminated, but you can always donate blood to your local Red Cross organization. There are also other ways to help, like donating food and clothes.
However, some serious conditions cannot be identified by basic testing and must be self-reported for additional investigation. Food and Drug Administration lifted a longstanding ban that prevented some 4.4 million Veterans, service members and civilians stationed in certain parts of Europe between 1980 and 1996 from donating blood. Plasma donation pay varies from site to site, but the average payout is typically around $50 per donation. You can donate safely roughly once a month, according to the American Red Cross, and a typical session takes less than two hours. To find a licensed and certified plasma center, click here.
What do they test your blood for when you donate?
Along with Mexico, officials have also issued a warning for countries in Central and South America. They say if you’ve traveled to any of the affected areas, you should wait at least four weeks to donate blood. In response to the mosquito-borne Zika outbreak, the American Red Cross is asking people to avoid donating blood if they traveled to Latin America or the Caribbean in the past 28 days. The Central California Blood Center is fully committed to remaining a volunteer donor supported organization and does not pay for blood donations. Gonsior said the restrictions had not affected blood donations significantly, although nationwide there is a 35,000-pint deficit in donations. Rare cases of malaria have been reported in Quintana Roo, according to the CDC’s World Malaria Map.
Once you donate blood, you receive an official certificate saying that you have done so. If Doug or I are ever in a situation that we need blood in Mexico, the certificate covers us, so we do not have to find or bring our own donors. That was a nice added perk to the apple juice and ham & cheese sandwich I received after donating. Our friend’s wife has now received the surgery that she needed and is recovering.