Healthdirect Free Australian health advice you can count on.

Medical problem? Call 1800 022 222. If you need urgent medical help, call triple zero immediately

healthdirect Australia is a free service where you can talk to a nurse or doctor who can help you know what to do.

Mobile blood donation centre

Mobile blood donation centre
beginning of content

Blood donation

2-minute read

Many people regularly need blood transfusions to help treat their medical conditions. Blood is also needed for emergencies and to treat cancer. In Australia, this blood supply relies on generous donations from people like you.

Why should I donate blood?

Australia relies on the generosity of donors who volunteer their time and blood.

Healthy adults are encouraged to donate blood to help save lives. This is in line with World Health Organization guidelines for ensuring a safe blood supply.

All types of people need blood donations, which means that all types of blood are needed.

Depending on your blood type, you may be able to donate various components of your blood or your whole blood.

Where to donate blood

You can donate blood to the Australian Red Cross Blood Service, which operates blood donor centres and mobile units all around Australia.

Blood donor requirements

Most healthy adults (aged 18-70) are able to give blood in Australia. However, there are some things that might affect your eligibility to be a blood donor. This includes which medications you take, if you have any infectious diseases and where you have recently travelled.

The Australian Red Cross Blood Service has a list of frequently asked questions that will help you work out whether or not you can donate blood.

The screening process for all donated blood in Australia is strict to ensure the safety of patients who receive the blood.

The blood donation process

The day before you donate, you need to prepare by drinking plenty of fluids and eating something salty. The Australian Red Cross Blood Service lists what you need to do before and after you donate blood.

When you are at the centre, trained staff will double-check that you are able to donate, and will go over the blood donation process with you in detail. They’ll make sure you feel comfortable and look after you during the process. They’ll also provide you with refreshments after you’ve donated.

Donating blood in Australia is extremely safe and most people feel absolutely fine afterwards. However, you might occasionally feel light-headed or dizzy. If you feel unwell afterwards, it’s important to tell staff at the time. Otherwise contact the Australian Red Cross on 13 14 95 for advice.

Last reviewed: March 2018

Need more information?

These trusted information partners have more on this topic.

Top results

Blood donation (giving blood) information on video | myVMC

Blood donation or plasma donation, that is giving blood to a blood bank, is a simple procedure that enables blood transfusions and can save lives.

Read more on myVMC – Virtual Medical Centre website

Blood Donation | myVMC

Blood is a bodily fluid which is circulated around the body via small vessels. Blood contains nutrients and oxygen which are needed to maintain healthy tissues. Blood has a number of components, including red blood cells, white blood cells, plasma, and platelets.

Read more on myVMC – Virtual Medical Centre website

Donating blood | Australian Red Cross Blood Service

The Blood Service collects blood from voluntary, non-remunerated donors at both fixed and mobile collection centres across Australia to ensure our blood supplies can meet the needs of patients who require blood transfusions.

Read more on Australian Red Cross Blood Service website

Blood Transfusion | myVMC

Medical centre information for blood donation and health of blood transfusion rhesus factor blood group information Australia

Read more on myVMC – Virtual Medical Centre website

Blood donations - myDr.com.au

Are you eligible to donate blood? What are blood donations used for? Answers to common questions about blood donations.

Read more on myDr website

Blood transfusions - ANZCA

Read more on ANZCA – Australian and New Zealand College of Anaesthetists website

Transfusion Reactions | myVMC

Blood transfusion is associated with a number of potential side effects

Read more on myVMC – Virtual Medical Centre website

Before a transfusion | Australian Red Cross Blood Service

Treatment with bloodtransfusion is carefully considered indiscussion withyour doctor. Find out more about your condition and treatment options to make an informed decision about your transfusion.

Read more on Australian Red Cross Blood Service website

Rhesus factor and pregnancy - myDr.com.au

Women with rhesus negative blood face possible problems during pregnancy.

Read more on myDr website

Platelet | Australian Red Cross Blood Service

Platelet transfusion may be required if you have a low platelet count (thrombocytopaenia). Platelets assist with forming blood clots.

Read more on Australian Red Cross Blood Service website

Healthdirect 24hr 7 days a week hotline

24 hour health advice and information you can count on

1800 022 222

Government Accredited with over 140 information partners

We are a government-funded service, providing quality, approved health information

Australian Government, health department logo ACT Government logo New South Wales government, health department logo Northen Territory Government logo Government of South Australia, health department logo Tasmanian government logo Government of Western Australia, health department logo
Feedback