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U.S. opens door to a change in blood donation policy for gay men

TheDemSocialist

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The U.S. Food and Drug Administration opened the door on Tuesday to a change in its blood donor deferral recommendations, which currently prohibit donations from gay men for a year following their last sexual encounter in order to reduce the risk of transmitting HIV, the virus that causes AIDS.
In December the FDA overturned a 30-year ban on all blood donations from men who have sex with men, saying the change was based on science showing an indefinite ban was not necessary to prevent transmission of the human immunodeficiency virus.
The FDA is now signaling it may go further.
Gay rights advocates say the latest update did not go far enough and that the agency's recommendations should move closer to individual risk assessments, which could, for example, look at whether an individual has been in a monogamous relationship. Their criticism intensified in the wake of a mass shooting at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida, in June, which saw many gay men unable to donate blood even as blood banks put out calls for donors.
In a notice posted to the Federal Register, the FDA said it was establishing a public docket for comment about its current recommendations and that interested people should submit comments, backed by scientific evidence, supporting alternative potential policies to reduce the risk of HIV transmission.


Read more @: U.S. opens door to a change in blood donation policy for gay men

A big step in the right direction. It makes perfect sense to move towards individual risk assessments. I hope this moves forward and a nondiscriminatory blood donation policy comes about, one thats based in science and not fear.
 

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clownboy

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I'm in favor of having a clean national blood supply. Not at all interested in being PC about it.
 

Skeptic Bob

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I'm in favor of having a clean national blood supply. Not at all interested in being PC about it.

I agree. Which is why individual assessment is the way to go. Or at least have a more detailed questionnaire. I completely understand why we might want to avoid donors who have had unprotected anal sex outside of a monogamous relationship in the past year as that is a high risk form of sex. But anal sex in a monogamous relationship should not be an issue. Or, maybe, anal sex with a condom. The sexual orientation itself shouldn't matter but behavior. Why should a straight man who hooks up with a different woman every weekend be able to donate but a monogamous homosexual couple can't?
 

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I can't believe this is actually a thing. We've got kids going hungry in Appalachia, but for heaven's sake let's debate permitting gay to give blood? Discrimination? Our priorities are so freaking screwed right now.

The apocalypse can't come soon enough.
 

TheDemSocialist

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I can't believe this is actually a thing. We've got kids going hungry in Appalachia, but for heaven's sake let's debate permitting gay to give blood? Discrimination? Our priorities are so freaking screwed right now.

The apocalypse can't come soon enough.

Ah yes! I forgot that the government is incapable of doing more than one thing at a time. :roll: :lamo
 

chromium

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I'm in favor of having a clean national blood supply. Not at all interested in being PC about it.

i agree, ban promiscuous heteros
 

chromium

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I can't believe this is actually a thing. We've got kids going hungry in Appalachia, but for heaven's sake let's debate permitting gay to give blood? Discrimination? Our priorities are so freaking screwed right now.

The apocalypse can't come soon enough.

since according to you it's so much easier to feed those kids in appalachia than to change the blood donation policy, i think you should get on it pronto
 

chromium

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Donating blood to save peoples lives isnt important? :shock:

nah he evidently wishes the 50 pulse victims who were killed immediately, and couldn't receive transfusions from the people most likely in the vicinity, had just bled to death instead
 

chromium

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Sad that we need an utterly predictable tragedy to produce an utterly inevitable policy change. Coulda done the correct thing before then. At least it could happen though
 

eohrnberger

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Read more @: U.S. opens door to a change in blood donation policy for gay men

A big step in the right direction. It makes perfect sense to move towards individual risk assessments. I hope this moves forward and a nondiscriminatory blood donation policy comes about, one thats based in science and not fear. [/FONT]

How good (accurate) and how quick is the AIDS test for blood donations? (Please tell me instantaneous or nearly so with 100% accuracy)

If the AIDS virus contaminates the donated blood supply it'll be one hell of a mess.

In any risk calculation you have to take into account the chances of the risk occurring as well as the costs associated with the risk occurring, and finally the cost of preventive measures.

So what you take on as a unfair discrimination victim cause is really little more than standard risk management practices.
 
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DA60

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I can't believe this is actually a thing. We've got kids going hungry in Appalachia, but for heaven's sake let's debate permitting gay to give blood? Discrimination? Our priorities are so freaking screwed right now.

The apocalypse can't come soon enough.

Ummm...if you hate the world so much why don't you just kill yourself - your problem solved.

Sounds like a less selfish outcome then wishing for the end of everything and everyone.
 

DA60

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So gays are pissed because they cannot give blood as freely as 'straight' people?

:roll:

I am all for gay marriage and gay adoption - but this is just silly.

I don't give a **** if they ban me from giving blood on the basis of medical concerns due to historical data. In fact, because of a daily drug I take, I am not allowed to give blood at all. You don't see me freaking out about it. If it's better for the blood supply - fine with me.

This sounds more like PC stuff to me.

I am sure the FDA will probably do what is in America's best interest - falling on the side of caution. If that means gays cannot give blood as freely as they wish? No biggie.
 

sanman

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Donating blood to save peoples lives isnt important? :shock:

It's the interests of the recipient of blood who are more important, not the interest of someone giving the blood. This isn't an issue of rights - nobody has a "right" to donate blood.
 

Howler63

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Ummm...if you hate the world so much why don't you just kill yourself - your problem solved.

Sounds like a less selfish outcome then wishing for the end of everything and everyone.

I don't hate the world, just the stupidity of some people.
 

Howler63

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Donating blood to save peoples lives isnt important? :shock:

Lots of blood is donated each and every day. Arguing whether high risk groups should be allowed to infect the system is a no-brainer. THe blood supply is just fine right now, so this bull**** isn't important.
 

radcen

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If it's done per actual scientific reasons, I'm down with it.

If it's done for political reasons, I'm not.

And I'm sorry to break it to some of you, but science isn't always apolitical.
 

TheDemSocialist

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It's the interests of the recipient of blood who are more important, not the interest of someone giving the blood. This isn't an issue of rights - nobody has a "right" to donate blood.

1.) No one is saying one has a "right" to donate blood.
2.) What is the issue with moving towards individual risk assessments?
 

TheDemSocialist

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Lots of blood is donated each and every day. Arguing whether high risk groups should be allowed to infect the system is a no-brainer. THe blood supply is just fine right now, so this bull**** isn't important.

Individual risk assessments is something that is used for straight individuals and they can have blood infections such as HIV, why not use it for the LGBT community as well?
 

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How good (accurate) and how quick is the AIDS test for blood donations? (Please tell me instantaneous or nearly so with 100% accuracy)

If the AIDS virus contaminates the donated blood supply it'll be one hell of a mess.

In any risk calculation you have to take into account the chances of the risk occurring as well as the costs associated with the risk occurring, and finally the cost of preventive measures.

So what you take on as a unfair discrimination victim cause is really little more than standard risk management practices.

It's quick enough and very accurate but obviously no test ever devised is 100%. The biggest problem are those who were recently infected in which case there might not be enough in the blood to test, and there is a risk from both straight and gay individuals, which is why they test every batch of blood for HIV and several other infectious diseases.

The current policy is to accept blood from gay men if they haven't had a sexual relationship in the past year. And from what the article said, the only change would be to go from a pretty arbitrary time period (1 year) to, potentially, an individual risk assessment. So a gay person in a monogamous relationship who has about the same risk of contracting HIV as you do MIGHT BE OK'd to donate.

I'm not an expert so I can't say whether that's a meaningful increase in risk for HIV or the other infectious diseases, but that's why they are requesting comments, backed by scientific evidence, from experts.
 

Deuce

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If it's done per actual scientific reasons, I'm down with it.

If it's done for political reasons, I'm not.

And I'm sorry to break it to some of you, but science isn't always apolitical.

A gay guy who has been in a monogamous relationship for 30 years was previously banned from donating. For life. That doesn't sound political?
 
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