(Orlando, FL. February 18, 2016) As an additional proactive and precautionary measure, OneBlood will begin implementing the following additional Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recommendations to further protect the blood supply from the Zika virus.
OneBlood is providing donors with educational materials to include the risk factors and signs and symptoms of the Zika virus.
[if !supportLists]· [endif]Donors with a history of Zika infection should self-defer for four (4) weeks after the resolution of symptoms.
[if !supportLists]· [endif]A donor who exhibits signs and symptoms of Zika infection within two (2) weeks of departure from an area where Zika is active should self-defer for four (4) weeks after the resolution of symptoms.
[if !supportLists]· [endif]A donor should self-defer for four (4) weeks after their last sexual contact with a man who has been diagnosed with Zika or who traveled to or resided in an area with active transmission of Zika in the three (3) months prior to that instance of sexual contact.
[if !supportLists]· [endif]Donors with a history of recent travel to, or who resided in an area with active Zika virus transmission, will be advised to inform the blood center promptly if they are diagnosed with Zika virus or if they develop symptoms of Zika infection within two (2) weeks following donation.
[if !supportLists]· [endif]The donor history questionnaire every donor is required to answer will be updated to include questions specific to the Zika virus.
Although Florida is not experiencing active transmission of the Zika virus, OneBlood plans to implement a nucleic acid test (NAT) for Zika to be used for blood donor screening. This test will be implemented as soon as the test becomes available and as soon as the FDA allows OneBlood to use it under current regulations.
Safety of the blood supply is OneBlood’s top priority. We are continually monitoring developments regarding Zika and remain in close contact with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), CDC and Florida Department of Health should additional measures be needed. The public should take great comfort in knowing our local blood supply is safe and meets the highest possible standards mandated by the FDA. Areas with active transmission of Zika are listed on the CDC website at http://www.cdc.gov/.
OneBlood is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) community asset responsible for providing safe, available and affordable blood to more than 200 hospital partners and their patients throughout most of Florida, parts of Georgia, Alabama and South Carolina. The OneBlood name is a constant reminder of the collective power we share to save another person’s life.