Inova Blood Donor Services Welcomes Previously Deferred Donors Due to vCJD

Falls Church, VAInova Blood Donor Services supports the updated guidance from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regarding variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD). vCJD is a rare disease of the central nervous system commonly referred to as “mad cow disease”. Despite initial concerns of potential transmission, science continues to show that the transmission risk of vCJD by blood components remains only theoretical.

Based on updated evidence, the FDA’s new guidance removes the deferral recommendations associated with geographic risk of vCJD for time spent in the United Kingdom (U.K.) from 1980 – 1996; time spent in France and Ireland from 1980 – 2001; and receipt of a blood transfusion in the U.K., France or Ireland from 1980 – present.

“We are expecting to welcome more than 12,000 now-eligible donors who have attempted to donate with us in the last few years,” said Terri Craddock, Senior Director of Inova Blood Donor Services “We estimate that another 65,000 individuals in our region are now eligible as well.”

Permanent deferrals remain in place for donors who volunteer that they are suspected of having vCJD, CJD or any other transmissible spongiform encephalopathies; have a blood relative diagnosed with familial prion disease; or received cadaveric pituitary human growth hormone, or a human cadaveric (allogeneic) dura mater transplant.

Inova Blood Donor Services will be reaching out to previously deferred donors, and hosting a public webinar for those questioning their deferral status. The webinar will be hosted by Grace C. Banez-Sese, MD, Medical Director for Inova Blood Donor Services on Wednesday, July 13 from 6 – 6:30 p.m. All are welcome to join. Please RSVP by Friday, July 8 via

Media Contact: Tracy Connell,, 703-289-2087

About Inova

Inova is Northern Virginia’s leading nonprofit healthcare provider. Our mission is to provide world-class healthcare – every time, every touch – to each person in every community we have the privilege to serve. Inova’s 20,000 team members provide more than 2 million patient visits each year through an integrated network of hospitals, primary and specialty care practices, emergency and urgent care centers, outpatient services and destination institutes. 

Inova’s five hospitals are consistently recognized by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, U.S. News & World Report Best Hospitals and Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grades for excellence in healthcare.

Inova is home to Northern Virginia’s only Level 1 Trauma Center and Level 4 Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Its hospitals have a total of 1,936 licensed beds. More information about Inova can be found at

About Inova Blood Donor Services

Inova Blood Donor Services plays a critical role in the region by supporting the majority of hospitals in the Washington, DC, region, including all Inova hospitals, with a safe and adequate blood supply for patients in the community we serve.  To support the needs of the region, Inova Blood Donor Services must collect 200 units a day from generous blood, platelet, plasma and double red cell donors.



  1. Charles on March 29, 2023 at 11:12 pm

    As part of the site construction, please consider instructing the prospective donor to click on the blue bar that reads “Make Appointment” versus the narrative in the color blue that is just embedded as part of a paragraph above it. Saying “click here” with that blue bar in view or within a short scroll lead me to click on that blue bar. I kept going in circles!

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