FDA lifts ban on gay male blood donors

By : Wire Report
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Washington (AP) – FDA lifts formal ban on blood donations from gay men. New policy requires year of abstinence.

The Food and Drug Administration has formally lifted the ban, allowing gay and bisexual men donate blood, so long as they’ve abstained from sex for a year.

That changes the current guidance, which is that any man who have ever had sex with another man in his entire life should never be able to donate blood. It’s a policy that has enraged gay rights groups and that is virtually impossible to enforce.

“No transmissions of HIV, hepatitis B virus, or hepatitis C virus have been documented through U.S.-licensed plasma derived products in the past two decades,” the FDA says in its recommendation.

The FDA also handed a victory to transgender people, saying donors may choose how to identify their sex.

The reason for banning donations by men who have sex with other men is simple: they are at much higher risk of becoming infected with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, as well as other viruses such as hepatitis B and C.

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