Here are some of the frequently asked questions about donating with us. If you have other questions which are not covered in the list below please contact us and we will be happy to clarify anything you wish to know.
What does Research Donors do?
Research Donors collects blood from paid volunteer donors, which is supplied either as whole blood or as constituent parts to medical researchers around the world. We are a business and we aim to make a profit from the service that we provide in collecting, processing and delivering our samples.
Are you connected to the NHS Blood Transfusion Service?
No we are not. The NHSBT does an amazing job supplying blood to treat sick patients who need blood and blood products. We strongly encourage people to donate blood to this important cause. Visit the NHSBT website to find out where you can become a blood donor.
The focus of Research Donors is providing blood for research. Volunteers are making a major contribution to healthcare by enabling vital biomedical research that will lead to the treatments of the future for cancer and other serious diseases.
What do I need to bring on the day?
Please read the page on donor attendance information. There is a downloadable version on there as well.
Will I get paid for donating?
Our donors are paid for their time and inconvenience attending the appointment. We do not pay directly for the blood that is donated. We will pay a standard appointment fee of £45.00 (£150 for Leukapheresis appointments) which you will receive 1-3 working days after your appointment provided we have your bank details (see Donor attendance information for more details).
Can I support a charity instead of receiving payment?
Yes, we are very happy to pay the fee we would have paid to you to one of our two preferred charities if you like.
How do I donate blood?
You need to be eligible, and you need to register with us to book an appointment. Please see the links for details – you must check carefully that you meet our eligibility criteria before making an appointment.
How much blood do you collect?
We may take up to 500ml (just under 1 pint) of blood at a single appointment, or smaller amounts at multiple appointments. We will never take more than 500ml in a 4-month period if you are a woman, or a 3-month period if you are a man.
What happens to the blood I donate
Your blood is tested for infections on each occasion you donate. If the tests are clear then blood or other constituent parts such as plasma and white cells may be sent to medical researchers.
What tests do you run on blood samples? What happens if there is an abnormal result?
All blood donations are tested in our laboratory to check their quality and safety. Tests include a whole blood count and for infectious diseases including AIDS/HIV, Syphilis, and Hepatitis Types B and C.
If we see any abnormalities in these tests we will notify your GP who may request that you visit them for further tests.
Is my information secure?
Your personal information is kept safe and separate from your blood samples. When blood or derivatives of your samples are sent to researchers, no personal information goes with them. There may be general information such as gender or age group, but nothing personal. Your medical history and lifestyle information is not shared or sent to any other person or organisation. Certain basic information such as name and bank details may need to be shared only for for the purposes of administration and managing payments.
How safe is donating blood?
Blood is taken in clinical conditions by qualified personnel, using modern equipment. Needles and other items used are from fresh packaging and are sterile, and are destroyed once used. All possible care is taken with regard to personal safety.
Can I bring my children?
Although we do not discourage you from bringing children with you to your donation appointment, a second responsible adult must accompany you during your visit to supervise the child.