4.61 Blood, Bone Marrow, and Living Organ Donation Leave


In accordance with Iowa Code section 70A.39 this policy outlines the qualification and usage criteria for University of Northern Iowa (University) employees participating in the blood, bone marrow, and living organ donation leave program. 

Policy Statement

University employees, excluding those covered under a collective bargaining agreement which provides otherwise, shall be granted a leave of absence to serve as a blood, bone marrow, or living organ donor without loss of seniority, pay, vacation time, personal days, sick leave, insurance and health coverage benefits, or earned overtime accumulation. The employee shall be compensated at their regular rate of pay for those regular work hours during which the employee is unable to work.

Donation Categories

Blood Donation 

A leave of absence up to two consecutive hours in a workday may be granted (up to four times per calendar year) to serve as a voluntary blood donor, subject to the procedure outlined below. Blood is defined as whole blood, power red, platelets, or plasma.

Bone Marrow Donation

A leave of absence up to five workdays may be granted to serve as a bone marrow donor, subject to the procedure outlined below. Bone marrow is defined as the soft tissue that fills human bone cavities.

Living Organ Donation

A leave of absence up to 30 workdays may be granted to serve as a living organ donor, subject to the procedure outlined below. A living organ is defined as one of two kidneys, one of two lobes of a liver, a lung or part of a lung, part of the pancreas, or part of the intestines. 


Employees must provide their supervisor with at least 30 days’ notice of the requested leave when foreseeable. When the need for leave is not foreseeable, the employee shall provide notice as soon as practicable.

A leave of absence request form must be completed and submitted to Human Resource Services (HRS) at least 30 days in advance when foreseeable. In addition, employees must provide HRS with appropriate written verification from their physician or the facility or hospital involved indicating the donation category for which they will serve as a voluntary blood, bone marrow, or living organ donor. Employees eligible for leave under the Family & Medical Leave Act (FMLA) will have their time off applied to their annual FMLA leave entitlement, where applicable. An employee deemed to be on leave under this section shall not be deemed to be an employee of the state for purposes of workers’ compensation or for purposes of the Iowa tort claims Act, chapter 669 of the Iowa Code.

Employees must remain in contact with their supervisor and HRS regarding any change in their need for leave and return to work status.  A medical release will be required to certify when the employee may return to work for a leave greater than one day in duration. Leave extensions beyond the limits identified in this policy will require updated medical documentation and use of paid leave accruals. 

Additional Resources:

4.49 FMLA Policy
Employee Assistance Program (EAP)

Human Resource Services, approved April 11, 2022
University Council, approved September 19, 2022
President and President's Cabinet, approved October 10, 2022