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Will I be tested for HIV when I donate blood?

Not specifically. You should not donate blood in order to be tested for HIV. Using blood donation as a way to get tested could put the blood supply at risk and endanger patients. HIV may not be detectable for a few weeks after a person has been infected. The Public Health Service has recommended an approach to blood safety in the United States that includes stringent donor selection practices and the use of screening tests. U.S. blood donations have been screened for HIV since 1985. However, this is not an appropriate avenue for being tested. You should contact your local health department or primary care physician for appropriate testing.
The Red Cross performs laboratory tests on blood products to qualify the products for transfusion and to protect the safety of the transfusion recipients. We do not provide diagnostic testing services for individuals. Additionally, a person must not donate blood in order to be tested since there is a danger of transmitting infections during the window period of the tests. Our community needs healthy donors. You can contact your local health department for AIDS testing.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.