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Looking for a quick way to make serious cash? In the time it takes to watch a movie, you can donate your blood plasma, earning hundreds of dollars per week. It’s a low-skill, relatively-high-paying side hustle, but you should know all the details before going in.
While a lot of plasma donation centers market themselves as benevolent, they’ve been called out by major media for being exploitative to the poor. That’s because they’re making a buttload of cash by reselling your blood plasma, and they’re making it by selling it to pharmaceutical companies who then go on to make more profit off of suffering patients.
So it’s not the best moral setup. But if you need money fast, it’s one of the easiest ways to drum up extra money quickly.
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Fifty-five percent of your blood is made up of plasma.
Plasma makes up about 55% of your blood. It’s primarily made up of water, salt, and minerals, and doesn’t include white or red blood cells.
When you donate plasma, the donation center will first draw a full blood sample. Then they’ll spin it through a centrifuge that separates the plasma from the white and red blood cells. They’ll keep the plasma and pump the rest back into your body.
Plasma is used to help patients who need it, but also to create for-profit medical treatments.
Blood plasma centers market their businesses as near-charitable. While it’s true that plasma donations can help make biotherapies for trauma, burn, and cancer victims, the people who are giving it away charitably and for free aren’t going to pay you for your good will.
The centers that do pay you are making a huge profit on your donation. They’re turning around and reselling your plasma at a markup of $300+ per liter, and the donations usually end up benefiting pharmaceutical companies that use your plasma to create for-profit treatments.
There are some oddly specific restrictions at certain plasma centers.
Generally speaking, if you’re in good health and above 110 pounds, you should be eligible to donate plasma. There are other specific requirements that vary slightly from center to center.
Some centers won’t accept your blood if you:
- Spent six months or more in the UK between 1980 and 1996.
- Have spent more than five years in Europe over the course of your life.
- Are a man who has had sex with other men. Ever. (an antiquated restriction that stems from HIV fears during the early ’80s and is slowly being rolled back)
- Have gotten a new tattoo or piercing in the past four months.
- Are less than one year postpartum.
You are usually allowed to donate twice per week, depending on your timing.
Related: How to Make Money Donating Plasma
On average you can make $35 – $65 per plasma donation.
You can expect to make between $35 – $65 for a routine plasma donation depending on the center and your weight. The less you weigh, the less you’ll get paid as they can’t take as much plasma from you safely.
Most donation centers do have bonuses for the first month of donations. These bonuses can add up to over $1,000 for the first month depending on your center location.
Related: How Much You Earn Donating Plasma
Highest-Paying Plasma Donation Near Me
Paid plasma donation is available in almost every state. There aren’t any centers in Alaska, Hawaii, or Vermont, but you can find at least one everywhere else. Bear in mind that pay and first-month bonuses can vary based on individual location. But here’s a breakdown of the centers we found in each state that pay the most:
TPR Huntsville is one of the highest-paying plasma donation centers in town. They pay up to $800 during your first month.
If you’re in Arizona, you’re in luck. TPR Glendale pays even more — up to $1,000 for your first month.
In Little Rock, one of the highest-paying plasma donation centers is Octapharma Plasma. Octapharma pays anywhere between $700 – $900 for your first month if you take advantage of all the donation opportunities.
Hemacare in Northridge has one of the highest payouts. They’ll give you up to $1,000 for your first month as a new donor.
In Denver, Octapharma Plasma is one of the highest-paying donation centers, with offers for first-time donors adding up to a potential $1,000 per month.
Related: 101 Side Hustles to Earn Extra Cash
Your choices are a bit more limited in Connecticut, but you can make up to $825 during your first month as a donor at CSL Plasma.
The highest paying plasma donation center in Wilmington is B Positive Plasma. They’ll pay you up to $800 for your first month.
One of the highest-paying plasma donation centers in Jacksonville is Octapharma. You’ll be able to earn up to $1,000 in your first month.
Currently, BioLIfe Plasma Services in Boise is offering new donors up to $900 in their first month, assuming they take advantage of all donation opportunities.
Octapharma has the highest payout in Chicago, offering new donors up to $1,000 in their first month.
Grifols Indianapolis is currently paying up to $800 during your first month of blood plasma donations.
BioLife in Des Moines pays up to $900, currently, for the first month’s worth of donations.
The highest-paying plasma donation center in Wichita is Octapharma, who is currently offering up to $1,000 for the first month of donations.
If you haven’t picked up on it already, Octapharma tends to be the highest-paying option if there is one in your city. There is a location in Louisville, and you can get up to $1,000 during the first month.
In New Orleans, once again Octapharma comes out on top in terms of pay with its $1,000 for the first month offer.
Your options are a little more limited in Maine. CSL is one of the only donation centers, but they may pay you up to $825 in the first month.
StemExpress in Boston is currently paying up to $1,000 for the first month of blood plasma donations.
In Detroit, you have three options when it comes to getting paid for your plasma donations:
Depending on location, Octapharma and CSL can pay up to $1,000 for the first month. But if your center doesn’t, it might be worth checking out BioLife’s current $900 offer.
You have lots of options if you live in the Twin Cities area, from BioLife to CSL to TPR from Grifols. But the centers that are likely to pay you the most are Octapharma, where you can regularly find offers of $1,000 for the first month. Call around to ensure you’re getting the best rate, though, as there is a lot of competition in the area.
The CSL centers in Jackson don’t pay very competitively, so you might want to check out ImmunoTek, where you can get up to $650 for the first month
In St. Louis, Octapharma pays the highest rates. Depending on the center, you can get up to $1,000 for the first month.
Biomat in Billings is not playing around. Their first-month payout of up to $1,050 is one of the highest we’ve seen across the entire nation!
Get the highest payout in Omaha at Octapharma Plasma.
One of your only paid plasma donation options in New Hampshire is BioLife. Luckily, they have a promotion going on right now that allows you to earn up to $900 during your first month of donations.
CSL Plasma is one of your only options in New Jersey. Some locations pay anywhere from $825 – $1,000 for the first month, but it will vary based on the individual location.
CSL is the most readily available plasma donation center in New Mexico, too. A lot of the Biomat locations in the state have closed lately, so there’s not as much competition as there used to be.
The largest paid plasma donation center chain in NYC is Olgam Life. You won’t get paid a premium in the Big Apple, though — the max payout per month is only $500.
In Charlotte, you’ll want to call around to both Octapharma and CSL locations. Typically, these plasma donations centers pay up to $1,000 per month, but the average pay for all donations centers in the Charlotte area is a bit lower than other locales.
BioLife is the dominant donation center in North Dakota, and they are currently paying $900 for the first full month’s worth of donations. Biomat in Bismarck has a pretty competitive offer, too, at $800 for the first month.
You have your choice of plasma donation centers in Ohio. Generally speaking, Octapharma tends to pay the most.
If you’re in a bigger city, like Oklahoma City, you have your choice of plasma donation centers in Oklahoma, too. Octapharma and BioLife tend to have the largest payouts, maxing out at $900 – $1,000 for the first month’s donations.
In Portland, TPR Portland tends to have the largest payouts.
Of the plasma centers available in Philly, B Positive tends to pay out the most at $800 for the first month of donations.
In Rhode Island, your primary option is CSL Plasma. Call around to different centers as the first month’s payouts can range from $500 – $1,000 depending on location.
You’re going to have a hard time drumming up the same money in South Carolina as you can in other states. In Charleston, the best offers tend to come from CSL locations where you can get up to $500 for the first month. Select locations may offer more.
TPR Sioux Falls has the highest payout in the state at $800 for the first month’s worth of donations.
In the Nashville area, Octapharma pays the most with offers up to $1,000 for the first month.
If you’re in downtown Houston, the most convenient plasma donation center also happens to be the highest paying. You can get up to $1,000 for the first month at Octapharma.
In Salt Lake City, Octapharma is the furthest donation center from the middle of town, but it’s still the highest paying like it is in Houston.
Once again, Octapharma’s pay scale is the best in Virginia. Plus, there are multiple convenient locations in Virginia Beach.
In the Seattle region, BioLife is your highest-paying option at $900 for the first month’s worth of donations.
The best option for you in West Virginia will depend on where you live, as there are only two paying donation centers in the state. If you’re near Morgantown or Clarksburg, you will want to head to BioLife to take advantage of the $900 for the first month offer.
If you’re further west on the Ohio border, CSL has a donation center in Parkersburg.
Octapharma is the highest paying plasma donation center in Wisconsin, with some centers paying up to $1,000 for the first month of donations.
Your only option for plasma donation in Wyoming is BioLife. That’s okay, though, because they have one of the most competitive starting offers at up to $900 for the first month.
There other popular plasma donation centers, but they don’t pay as much.
Yes, there are several other popular plasma donation chains across the country, but they tend to not pay as much as the ones listed above. Some other popular options include:
- BPL Plasma
- Gcam Plasma