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No change to blood ban

Timothy Kincaid

June 11th, 2010

The Health and Human Services Advisory Committee on Blood Safety and Availability has voted 9-6 to keep a lifelong ban on any man who has had even one sexual encounter with anther man in the past thirty-three years. Cuz their skurrred of the gay.

There is no medical reason for the ban as it is. All of the blood agencies favor changing the ban. Most other industrial nations do not have a life time ban.

But none of that matters. Because the committee members were not voting based on science, experience or logic.



June 11th, 2010 | LINK

As soon as they change their ridiculous rules, they are welcome to have a pint of my O negative (universal donor) blood every 8 weeks. Until then, I guess I will just keep it all to myself.

Mark F.
June 11th, 2010 | LINK

Considering that the HIV tests are already really accurate, it seems to me that a man who has tested HIV negative 3-6 months ago and has not had sex with another man since then should be allowed to donate blood.

This action may prevent one person in 10 million from getting AIDS at the expense of significantly reducing the amount of blood donated.

It should be noted that the government was reluctant to require any screening of blood in the early years of the epidemic (with the complicity of the blood banks and with disasterous consequences), so that may be the reason for super caution at this point, not homophobia.

paul j stein
June 11th, 2010 | LINK

Lawyers !

June 12th, 2010 | LINK

If I ever decide to give blood I’m lying on every single question they ask me.

June 12th, 2010 | LINK

You could always lie and donate blood if you’re so altruistic about your fellow humans. Me? I don’t give a crap.

Mark F.
June 13th, 2010 | LINK

“If I ever decide to give blood I’m lying on every single question they ask me.”

I actually think that’s fine if you’ve had an HIV test 3-6 months ago that was negative and have done nothing to expose yourself to HIV in the meantime.

June 13th, 2010 | LINK

I wouldn’t suggest lying on every single question, that would get you disqualified, too. Are you going to say you got a tattoo or piercing or went to a malarial area when you didn’t? ;)

But seriously, most of the other questions have at least some value (even if they test for most of it anyway). Don’t sabotage the system. If you know for sure that you’re clean, then I suppose that isn’t too bad, but otherwise I suggest knowing your status first. This is people’s lives we’re talking about.

June 14th, 2010 | LINK

Same as Derrick, I’m a ‘universal donor’ who used to donate blood regularly and happen to be HIV negative.

Their foolish loss (and the world’s)…

June 15th, 2010 | LINK

Remember, a straight man can have a drug-fueled orgy with 10 HIV+ female prositutes and 366 days later can give blood. If you got a hand job from your best friend in 1979 you are barred for life (since the FDA does not define “sex” in its lifetime ban on gay men). That seems like sound science to me – not!

It goes farther than the blood ban, though. Because of these rules, gay men are barred from being organ donors as well. So if my sister needs a kidney or one of my nephews needs my bone marrow, I am barred from even offering to help, no matter what my “lifestyle” is really like – and, as I noted when I declined the free HIV testing at Pride last weekend, you have to be having sex to catch an STD, and I’m just not that slutty.

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