Frequently asked questions
Even during a pandemic, 1,000 blood donations are needed every day to meet the needs of people awaiting transfusions of blood products. Therefore, it is still essential for Héma-Québec to fulfill its critical mission of collecting blood donations for the people of Québec.
- Additional safety measures deployed
- Qualification criteria for donating blood during the pandemic
- What you need to know before going to a collection site
- General information about COVID-19
Additional safety measures deployed
Héma-Québec applies strict measures—at all times, not just during a pandemic—to ensure the safety of donors and of the blood.
Blood donation candidates must undergo a rigorous selection process, and only healthy people are eligible to give blood. Moreover, Héma-Québec has always asked people who have a fever or who feel unwell to not come to clinic locations.
There is also no risk of contracting an illness by giving blood, because all of the materials used for collecting blood are new, sterile, sealed and used only once.
To date, the following additional measures have been implemented:
- Every donor and volunteer are asked additional questions beforehand:
- Do you have a fever?
- Do you have a cough?
- Regular cleaning of frequently touched surfaces.
The risk level for COVID-19 remains low for transfusions. At this time, there is no evidence that the virus can be transmitted by transfusion. The transmission by transfusion of a respiratory virus—including COVID-19—has never been documented.
Qualification criteria for donating blood during the pandemic
These criteria are in addition to those already in effect, which you can read on the Who can donate? page.
If you have contracted COVID-19, you must wait to donate for 10 days after a full recovery before you may attend a clinic or donor center.
Yes. If the tests are negative for COVID-19 and if you also meet usual qualification criteria, you are eligible to donate blood.
Autorised vaccines by Health Canada do not involve a blood donation prohibition period. Someone who has been vaccinated and is feeling well may donate without delay.
What you need to know before going to a collection site
Appointment booking is recommended for all blood, plasma and platelet donations at blood drives, GLOBULE Centres and PLASMAVIE Lounges. Book an appointment.
However, if you are passing by a collection site and are available to donate blood, do not hesitate to check with our team if we can accommodate you.
You may be accompanied by an adult at a collection site.
We strongly recommend that a donor with a young child come with a companion (unless a daycare service is provided by the organizing committee at the blood drive site). The person accompanying the donor can care for the child during registration and the meeting with the nurse or blood drive agent. These steps require the parent’s concentration and are where confidential questions are asked.
While less than 5% of donations cause adverse effects, Héma-Québec must take into consideration potential risks to the safety of donors. In exceptional cases in which a problem arises, the companion can care for or supervise the child.
For more information about a specific situation, please contact Donor Services at 1 800 847-2525.
Wearing a mask is no longer mandatory in order to access the collection sites.
However, people who wish to wear their mask may do so.
Héma-Québec will continue to offer medical masks to those who wish to wear them.
Wearing a mask is no longer mandatory in order to access the collection sites. However, people who wish to wear their mask may do so. Héma-Québec will continue to offer medical masks to those who wish to wear them.
No. A collection site is not the place to get tested for COVID-19, HIV or hepatitis B and C.
If you think you may be at risk, we ask that you not go to a collection site for the safety of other donors and Héma-Québec staff and volunteers.
No. Since the transfusion transmission of coronavirus—including COVID-19—has never been shown, Héma-Québec does not test blood donations for COVID-19.
General information about COVID-19
To learn more: