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AMA oppose blood donation ban

Timothy Kincaid

June 20th, 2013

Many other industrial leading nations now have lifted their lifetime ban on blood donations by gay men. Now the American Medical Association has called on the US Food and Drug Administration to do the same. (ABC)

The American Medical Association voted Tuesday to oppose a decades long ban by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, which prohibits gay men from donating blood.

“The lifetime ban on blood donation for men who have sex with men is discriminatory and not based on sound science,” AMA board member Dr. William Kobler said in a statement. “This new policy urges a federal policy change to ensure blood donation bans or deferrals are applied to donors according to their individual level of risk and are not based on sexual orientation alone.”



June 20th, 2013 | LINK

Well, that’s a welcome bit of news. It will take a while to get this changed, but it’s great to see science being used instead of fear. It’s never made sense that a straight man could have an orgy with a handful of HIV+ female prostitutes, while sharing needles and shooting up heroin, and he could give blood 13 months later, while a man who had a single sexual encounter with another man in 1980 was barred for life.

Mark F.
June 21st, 2013 | LINK

Seems like a reasonable change, but almost no men in the United States get HIV from heterosexual encounters. (I know about Magic Johnson, there are a few exceptions.)

June 21st, 2013 | LINK

As I recall, the move to exclude gay men from donating blood was fully supported and advocated by the gay community at the time. We were the leading force in education and preventive measures. The reality was much different than it is today. Statistically speaking, gay men WERE, almost exclusively, the infected population……but the demographics have changed. Unfortunately, heterosexual members of society were bombarded with rhetoric and lies that lead them to believe they were immune to “God’s curse on homosexuals”. It was a time of learning and growth for the world at large. My concern is the pendulum will swing back if were don’t remain vigilante. The current trend of “bare backing” is evidence that not everyone learned those lessons.
While I support the reversal of prohibiting us from voluntarily donating blood, I believe continued education, and responsible behavior, among our ranks, including discouraging blood donation, are necessary of we are to continue the momentum towards equality.

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