UCHealth Garth Englund Blood Center - Fort Collins

Home Locations UCHealth Garth Englund Blood Center - Fort Collins

Because we are in a health care setting, masks are still required in all facilities. Thank you for helping keep our patients and staff safe.

Monday: 7:30am – 5pm
Tuesday: 7:30am – 5pm
Wednesday: 9:30am – 7pm
Thursday: 9:30am – 7pm
Friday: 7:30am – 5pm
Saturday: 9am – 4pm
Sunday: Closed

Schedule a blood donation or call us at 970.495.8965

**Due to COVID-19 concerns, masks are required and appointments are highly encouraged.**

Be a hero to your neighborhood! Give blood. Save lives.

Did you know one blood donation could save three lives?

When you give blood at UCHealth Garth Englund Blood Center, the blood supplies multiple hospitals in northern Colorado: Poudre Valley Hospital, Medical Center of the Rockies, Greeley Hospital and Longs Peak Hospital.

Are you blood type A? B? Maybe AB or O? It doesn’t matter what blood type you are (or if you even know your blood type).

All types of blood are valuable, and all can help save lives.

Blood donor eligibility

To donate blood, a person must be at least 18 years old (or 17 with a parent’s permission) and show photo identification. New blood donors must weigh at least 120 pounds and be in good health. Prior donors must weigh at least 110 pounds with no complications during previous donations.

If you were instructed by your doctor to donate for your health, please contact the Donor Center at the number above.

Sexual orientation and gender identity

UCHealth Garth Englund Blood Center follows FDA guidance in allowing donors to self-identify and self-report as male or female, and answer the gendered questions on the Blood Donor Record (history questionnaire) accordingly for the purpose of blood donation. For donors who do not identify as either male or female, we ask that you select one gender, and answer all of the questions according to that one gender when completing the questionnaire.

Donor eligibility

To ensure safety for recipients of donated blood and blood products, individuals may NOT donate for certain reasons or conditions.

  • The restrictions for military service members stationed in Europe AND for donors who have spent 5 years or more HAS BEEN LIFTED. You may now donate if you lived or served in the military in Europe.
  • If you spent time that adds up to 3 months or more from 1980 – 1996 in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales, the Isle of Man, the Channel Islands, Gibraltar, or the Falkland Islands, you may not donate blood or blood products.
  • If you spent time that adds up to 5 years or more from 1980 – 2001 in the Republic of Ireland and/or France, you may not donate blood or blood products.
  • You can be exposed to malaria through travel to certain countries, so your travel will be evaluated when you come in to donate.
  • In almost all cases, medications will not disqualify you as a blood donor. Your eligibility will be based upon the reason that the medication was prescribed. As long as the condition is under control and you are healthy, blood donation is usually permitted. When you come in to dated, you will be asked to review a list of medications that are known to harm recipients. Please tell us if you have taken any of these medications after reviewing the list.
  • If you have had recent surgery, it is not necessarily the surgery, but the underlying condition requiring surgery to be performed that requires evaluation before you donate. Again we need you to be well and healthy for donation.
  • Pregnant women need to wait 6 weeks after giving birth to protect your own health. Breast feeding is not a deferral.
  • Wait 3 months after a tattoo/permanent makeup if it was applied in a state that does not regulate tattoo facilities. Currently, the only states that DO NOT regulate tattoo facilities are: District of Columbia, Georgia, Idaho, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Pennsylvania, Utah, and Wyoming. A tattoo or cosmetic tattoo is acceptable if applied by a state-regulated entity using sterile needles and ink that is not reused.
  • Piercings are acceptable as long as the instruments used were single-use equipment and disposable (which means both the gun and the earring cassette were disposable). Wait 3 months if reusable equipment was used.
  • You should not donate if you have AIDS/HIV, have had a positive test for the AIDS/HIV virus, have or have taken antiretroviral medications. Never donate blood just to get free testing!
  • If you have ever been diagnosed with hepatitis B or hepatitis C, you may not donate blood or blood products. If you live with or have had close contact with someone with hepatitis, wait 12 months until after the last contact before you donate.
  • Persons who have received a COVID-19 vaccination must wait 14 days from their vaccination date to donate.

>> See additional donor guideline information
>> Medication deferral list

Apheresis donation

Apheresis (ay-fur-ee-sis) is a special kind of blood donation. We use an automated process that lets a donor give blood, and then separates the whole blood into its 3 basic parts: platelets, red cells and plasma. Each of these components is a valuable part of many health treatments.

During apheresis donation, we only keep the specific part of the blood that is needed. The rest of your blood is then safely and comfortably returned to you.

Who can be an apheresis donor?

Eligibility requirements for apheresis donations are similar to whole blood donations. Apheresis donors must:

  • Be at least 18 years old.
  • Be in good health.
  • Weigh at least 120 pounds.

Male donors and female donors who have never been pregnant are preferred for platelet and plasma donations. Women who have been pregnant must have additional, special testing.

Collected from an apheresis donation: platelets, red cells, and plasma
  • Platelets are tiny cells in your blood that help control bleeding. When a blood vessel is damaged, platelets collect at the area that is injured and temporarily repair the tear. Platelets then activate the parts of the plasma which form a clot and help the wound to heal. In a platelet donation, an apheresis machine collects your platelets along with some plasma, returning your red cells and most of the plasma back to you.
  • Double red cell donations involve you giving a concentrated dose of red cells. This is the part of your blood that is needed every day to help people who need a transfusion as part of their care. This type of donation uses an automated process that separates your red blood cells from the other parts of your blood, and then returns your plasma and platelets back to you.
  • Plasma donations are when you give the part of your blood that is used to treat patients in emergency situations. Type AB plasma may be given to anyone, no matter what blood type they have. Plasma is collected through an automated process that separates plasma from the other parts of your blood, and then returns your red blood cells and platelets back to you.

>> View/download our Apheresis Donation brochure to learn more

Your donation at Garth Englund

Preparing for a successful blood donation
Several things can be done before donating, and in between donating, to keep you feeling your best. Follow these simple suggestions, for big results:

Rest. Be sure to get a good night’s sleep prior to donating, and try to schedule before or several hours after exercising.

Hydrate. Start hydrating at least 24 hours prior to your donation appointment. Choose water, juice, or sports drinks to help make your veins easier to locate, and to replenish fluid volume lost during your donation. Avoid drinking alcohol or caffeine (coffee, soda, energy drinks) for 24 hours before your donation.

Eat well. Eat a well-balanced meal within four hours leading up to your donation appointment. Avoid fatty foods as they may affect the blood you donate. Increase your diet in iron-­rich foods between donations to maintain your proper iron levels.

When you’re at Garth Englund

When you enter the Garth Englund donation site, staff members will guide you through the process and answer your questions.

The donation process takes 30 to 45 minutes. This includes the time needed to fill out health history and consent forms.

The rest of the process includes having your vitals taken, and undergoing a finger-stick test called a hematocrit that checks your volume of red blood cells.

The actual drawing of blood – a pint – takes five to 10 minutes.

After your donation
  • Rest for a short time.
  • Enjoy a snack.
  • Please fill out a reminder postcard for your next appointment. You can give blood once every 56 days (or eight weeks).

Host a mobile blood drive

Over 80% of UCHealth blood products are the direct result of community-hosted blood drives.

Among the many organizations who have hosted a mobile blood drive are Hewlett Packard, Intel, and Colorado State University. Their willingness to host a blood drive contributed significantly to the patient care successes of our hospitals.

Find out more