Allowing gay men to donate blood could help save over a million lives, says US study

  • metta

    Posts: 39104

    Sep 21, 2014 4:32 AM GMT
    Allowing gay men to donate blood could help save over a million lives, says US study

    Lifting the ban on blood donations from gay men could increase total annual blood supply in the US by 2%-4%, says UCLA study
    - See more at: http://www.gaystarnews.com/article/allowing-gay-men-donate-blood-could-help-save-over-million-lives-says-us-study210914
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    Sep 21, 2014 5:22 PM GMT
    metta8 saidAllowing gay men to donate blood could help save over a million lives, says US study

    Lifting the ban on blood donations from gay men could increase total annual blood supply in the US by 2%-4%, says UCLA study
    - See more at: http://www.gaystarnews.com/article/allowing-gay-men-donate-blood-could-help-save-over-million-lives-says-us-study210914


    It could also pollute the blood supply - already sourced by drug addicts in large part - and kill millions. As disagreeable as the ban on donating may be to some, it's rationally based and doesn't trouble me - or most folks not looking to find and inflate issues to gratify some other personal (read, selfish) need - in the least.
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    Sep 21, 2014 8:09 PM GMT
    metta8 saidAllowing gay men to donate blood could help save over a million lives, says US study

    Lifting the ban on blood donations from gay men could increase total annual blood supply in the US by 2%-4%, says UCLA study
    - See more at: http://www.gaystarnews.com/article/allowing-gay-men-donate-blood-could-help-save-over-million-lives-says-us-study210914


    I agree - The FDA regulates how the blood is collected and transfused in this country, while the National Institute of Healths is in charge blood science, epidemiology, and clinical practice of blood supply which hospitals and blood collection centers follows. So it is up to the NIH to commence reviewing its policies since the FDA and others follows their recommendations.

    *Each day life-saving blood transfusions are needed in hospitals and emergency treatment facilities across the U.S.

    *There are more than 9.5 million blood donors in the United States and an estimated 5 million patients who receive blood annually, resulting in a total of 14.6 million transfusions per year.

    *Most patients do not experience any side effects from blood transfusions. On rare occasions, blood transfusions can cause adverse reactions in the patients receiving blood.

    *Although the U.S. blood supply is safer than ever before, some bacteria, viruses, prions, and parasites can be transmitted by blood transfusions.

    *Each donor is screened for risk of transmissible disease by questionnaire, and each unit of blood donated in the U.S. is routinely screened for various infectious disease pathogens, including five transfusion–transmitted viruses, using nine laboratory tests.
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    Sep 21, 2014 9:29 PM GMT
    Someone should ask Ryan White or Arthur Ashe their opinions.

    Oh wait, they're both dead from tainted blood transfusions.

    Here's a better solution: all heterosexual, qualified EBT (Welfare), Medicaid and Free Government Cellphone recipients should be required to give blood 6 times per year or lose their place on the liberal gravy train.

    Women could use the money from the blood donation to pay for their own birth control and Free cellphone users could pay for their cellphones instead of me paying for them.
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    Sep 21, 2014 10:08 PM GMT
    Liberals, you've murdered 57 million people (more than even Adolf Hitler):

    http://www.numberofabortions.com/

    Since the US population is growing older and your murdering babies, whose going to donate the blood?
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    Sep 22, 2014 12:34 AM GMT
    Let's see. Post transfusion from the Red Cross, I'd still ask about a round of PreP and periodic Hep C testing.

    Unless my straight friends are imaginative liars, any surgery motivates banking my own blood instead of taking theirs. Sluts.

    Still, next time my employer hosts a company-wide blood drive, I'm just going to schedule a vacation day. They go overboard with the "I gave" campaign here.

    (damn, wish I had saved my 2000 post for a better subject.)
  • metta

    Posts: 39104

    Sep 22, 2014 2:18 AM GMT
    mx5guynj saidLiberals, you've murdered 57 million people (more than even Adolf Hitler):

    http://www.numberofabortions.com/

    Since the US population is growing older and your murdering babies, whose going to donate the blood?




    You do realize that the World population is increasing...not decreasing....don't you?

    http://www.worldometers.info/world-population/

    Thankfully, the growth rate is decreasing.
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    Sep 22, 2014 2:57 AM GMT
    I'm one of those US gay men who is "barred for life" from donating blood. When I honestly answered the screener's questions about being gay, as I attempted to donate blood the days after 9/11.

    You wanna know how dirty and second class that made me feel, as I left the blood bank and rode home? I'm a retired Army Colonel, of 25 years honorable service, and I'm being rejected like shit. I literally cried as I rode my motorcycle back home. The first and only time I was made to feel bad about being gay. I swore it would never happen again.

    And to this day I remain a perfect blood donor candidate. No HIV, no STDs in my entire life, not once, not ever. And with a rare blood type. Who had given blood many times during my military service. Hell, I even organized campus blood drives myself, when I taught college Army ROTC.

    And now I was turned away, forever. Unless there is a change in US policy. That Republicans in Congress continue to block, and put pressure on the responsible agencies to continue to enforce the ban.

    And why? For political reasons, not medical ones. Because it supports the Right's view of gays as polluted, unclean, untouchable freaks. Stand back! They've got a disease! They molest children! You've heard all that before from the Right.

    Perhaps now you understand some of my gay activism. Have something like that happen to YOU, and see how you feel.
  • jlly_rnchr

    Posts: 1759

    Sep 22, 2014 3:25 AM GMT
    The articles about this are misleading. Yes, donations from men who have sex with men could help save millions of lives. But that doesn't mean that those millions of lives are not being saved without us. The current blood supply is not low.

    Maybe we have to just suck it up and admit that it doesn't make sense to overturn the ban. Gay men are still the highest percentage of HIV infections in the US, and the highest percentage of new infections. [Edited for Art_Deco} The window period for a blood donation testing positive for HIV is around a week. If we have the most new infections, and a newly infected person can donate blood that will test negative for nearly a week, AND the current blood supply is not low anyway, what's the incentive for the FDA to overturn?

    http://www.redcrossblood.org/learn-about-blood/what-happens-donated-blood/blood-testing
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    Sep 22, 2014 3:32 AM GMT
    jlly_rnchr said
    The window period for testing positive for HIV is around a week. If we have the most new infections, and a newly infected person can test negative for nearly a week.

    False. The common HIV tests only show results from 2 to 6 months after exposure. Only the most expensive PCR blood test (polymerase chain reaction test) can give quicker results, from 10 days to 3 weeks. It's very difficult to find, and costly to afford.

    Please don't give out bad information.
  • jlly_rnchr

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    Sep 22, 2014 3:35 AM GMT
    Art_Deco said
    jlly_rnchr said
    The window period for testing positive for HIV is around a week. If we have the most new infections, and a newly infected person can test negative for nearly a week.

    False. The common HIV tests only show results from 2 to 6 months after exposure. Only the most expensive PCR test (Polymerase chain reaction test) can give quicker results, from 10 days to 3 weeks. It's very difficult to find, and costly to afford.

    Please don't give out bad information.


    Ah, I hate bad information, this is why I got my info from the American Red Cross's website.

    "Enzyme Immunoassay (EIA) is used for the qualitative detection of antibodies to both HIV-1 and HIV-2 in a combined ChLIA test that uses human serum or plasma. HIV-1 and HIV- 2 confirmation is performed using one or a combination of tests including an HIV-1 indirect immunofluorescence assay (IFA) and HIV-2 EIA; a rapid diagnostic test is used for HIV-1 and HIV-2 differentiation. HIV-1 antibody detection includes the major HIV groups and variants including HIV-1 Group O. HIV RNA detection by NAT, using TMA in minipools of 16 (as described for HBV testing), closes the window period between infection and the detection of antibody by about 4-7 days. The current risk of transfusion-transmission of HIV is approximately 1 in 2,000,000."

    http://www.redcrossblood.org/learn-about-blood/what-happens-donated-blood/blood-testing
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    Sep 22, 2014 3:47 AM GMT
    jlly_rnchr said
    Art_Deco said
    jlly_rnchr said
    The window period for testing positive for HIV is around a week. If we have the most new infections, and a newly infected person can test negative for nearly a week.

    False. The common HIV tests only show results from 2 to 6 months after exposure. Only the most expensive PCR test (Polymerase chain reaction test) can give quicker results, from 10 days to 3 weeks. It's very difficult to find, and costly to afford.

    Please don't give out bad information.


    Ah, I hate bad information, this is why I got my info from the American Red Cross's website.

    "Enzyme Immunoassay (EIA) is used for the qualitative detection of antibodies to both HIV-1 and HIV-2 in a combined ChLIA test that uses human serum or plasma. HIV-1 and HIV- 2 confirmation is performed using one or a combination of tests including an HIV-1 indirect immunofluorescence assay (IFA) and HIV-2 EIA; a rapid diagnostic test is used for HIV-1 and HIV-2 differentiation. HIV-1 antibody detection includes the major HIV groups and variants including HIV-1 Group O. HIV RNA detection by NAT, using TMA in minipools of 16 (as described for HBV testing), closes the window period between infection and the detection of antibody by about 4-7 days. The current risk of transfusion-transmission of HIV is approximately 1 in 2,000,000."

    http://www.redcrossblood.org/learn-about-blood/what-happens-donated-blood/blood-testing

    Now tell us where that test is done, under what circumstances, and how much it costs. Can you do that?

    I'm aware of what you say. But that is an exceptional test, rarely given. Do your research.

    When you get the common free mouth swab, or finger prick, you are NOT getting that test, I promise you. Those tests are only accurate from about 2 months exposure at the earliest, and more commonly 3 to 6 months from exposure.

    So please stop putting out bad info here. If you wanna spend several hundred USD you can have that test you describe. If you can convince a doctor you need it. HIV walk-in clinics don't offer it. You need a full blood draw for it, at very large cost.
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    Sep 22, 2014 4:15 AM GMT
    The decision as to who can and who cannot give blood should be based on science. A prostitute can give blood. But since I've had sex with a man since 1977 I can't. That's prejudice not science. If HIV testing were as routine as blood pressure testing, infectied individuals could he identified routinely. Fear, stigma, ignorance and prejudice are far more prevalent than HIV infection.
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    Sep 22, 2014 4:44 AM GMT
    JimiB saidThe decision as to who can and who cannot give blood should be based on science. A prostitute can give blood. But since I've had sex with a man since 1977 I can't. That's prejudice not science. If HIV testing were as routine as blood pressure testing, infectied individuals could he identified routinely. Fear, stigma, ignorance and prejudice are far more prevalent than HIV infection.

    You are correct. And ALL blood in the US is checked, or else it isn't safe.

    Because people lie about their status, or simply don't know. You think an unwitting HIV poz guy has never given blood before? Or a prostitute in need of money?

    If the blood screening was not effective, then gawd help our US blood supply.

    So the only reason gays are barred from giving blood is political. To ostracize us, marginalize us, make us into the sick monsters that the US Right Wing says we are.

    The Right Wing has put me on that list. And I want to be taken off it. Because my blood is pure, untainted, and rare, of help to others. It's just one more way Republicans make me a second-class citizen. Do you begin to understand why I despise them, for what they have done to me, and to you?
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    Sep 22, 2014 5:19 AM GMT
    Let's all just hit the "ignore his posts" button on these mx5guy and this mginsd guys. Oh and the southbeach guy too. But that only helps if other posters don't quote them. It's not that they're conservative, I welcome opposing views. It's that they are toxic w their tired old talking points. They contribute nothing to the dialogue and just want to get a rise out of the rest. Why are they on RJ anyways. I see nothing athletic about any of them. One calls himself masculine but then shows pics of himself w the most effeminate car ever built, the other one is just fat and obnoxious, and southbeach is ...well, southbeach.

    FYI, Arthur Ash and Ryan White died in the 80's, before they tested the blood supply and back when R Reagan was ignoring the pandemic, raising taxes and increasing the deficit. Having a ban against gay men donating blood is absurd. All someone has to do is lie and say they're straight. It's about embarrassing someone by suggesting that gay=HIV.

    SHIT! That's as ridiculous as driving a Mazda Miata.
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    Sep 22, 2014 5:36 AM GMT
    Koastal saidLet's all just hit the "ignore his posts" button on these mx5guy and this mginsd guys.

    After mx5guynj posted:

    Liberals, you've murdered 57 million people (more than even Adolf Hitler)

    ...I'm kinda inclined to block the wacko. But I rarely block guys here. Some of their lunacy amuses me, and I see a lot of potential in mx5guynj. I'm gonna watch to see how nutjob he can get. It promises to be epic.
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    Sep 22, 2014 5:47 AM GMT
    So this discussion hits a *vein* with me. Let me explain what I did two years ago:
    - went to donate blood on campus (I'd never donated before)
    - may have 'misunderstood' much of the questionnaire
    - allowed the kind volunteer to draw a bag of blood
    - was asked by phlebotomist if i wanted to "hold" the bag
    - refused to give the bag back, once in my grasp
    - was wrestled to the ground by 6-8 volunteer/staff
    - served 40 hours in jail, fines etc

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    Sep 22, 2014 5:50 AM GMT
    bigMTs saidSo this discussion hits a *vein* with me. Let me explain what I did two years ago:
    - went to donate blood on campus (I'd never donated before)
    - may have 'misunderstood' much of the questionnaire
    - allowed the kind volunteers to pull a bag of blood
    - was asked by phlebotomist if i wanted to "hold" the bag
    - refused to give the bag back, once in my grasp
    - was wrestled to the ground by 8 volunteer/staff
    - served 40 hours in jail, fines etc

    Why did you retain the bag, if you were donating blood? What were you charged with?
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    Sep 22, 2014 5:55 AM GMT
    I did it in protest of dated, homophobic policies. I want to clarify that I did donate blood, then revoked the donation (after I knew they knew they couldn't officially use it).
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    Sep 22, 2014 7:21 AM GMT
    mx5guynj saidLiberals, you've murdered 57 million people (more than even Adolf Hitler):

    http://www.numberofabortions.com/

    Since the US population is growing older and your murdering babies, whose going to donate the blood?


    Embryo, not people. How perfect the World would be with 57 million more children in foster homes. Or you want them in blood farms?! icon_eek.gif

    Any responsible men and women should donate blood. My brother almost died a couple years ago because they were out of blood.. I'm gay and I am always safe but still I go to HIV and other STD tests regularly. I take care of myself and others too. So why not to donate? If somebody is a drug addict or fuck bareback with strangers he is not responsible but it has nothing to do with his sexuality. They use quick HIV tests anyway...

    I donate blood btw icon_twisted.gif (but I'm in the closet so it doesn't count)

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    Sep 22, 2014 3:11 PM GMT
    I have a movement up here in Canada where I'm getting people to donate on my behalf, until the 5-year deferral period is overturned (we no longer have a lifetime ban).

    Blood donors should be screened for sexual behaviour rather than sexual orientation. This is already done in some countries.

    Also, the standard HIV test conducted here is accurate enough that you have double the chance of being struck by lightning in this country than contracting HIV from a blood transfusion.
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    Sep 22, 2014 3:39 PM GMT
    GrumpyGabe said
    They use quick HIV tests anyway...

    I donate blood btw icon_twisted.gif (but I'm in the closet so it doesn't count)

    First, I commend your blood donating. I routinely did so myself much of my adult life, until I answered the "gay" question honestly. Which I never encountered before, until then.

    As for the "quick HIV test"...

    As a reminder, you do get the results quickly. I did a quick blood draw during Pride Fest, to see this technique at work, and the blood reacted right in front of me, while I was still seated. The mouth swab takes about 20 minutes.

    But those results still are a "snapshot" of your HIV status from 3 to 6 months ago, not today. That's because the antigens they detect do not develop in your body until that length of time has passed after you have HIV in your body. The quick tests detect HIV indirectly, by the changes it causes in your body, but it can still be there.

    YOU CAN BE INFECTED AND CONTAGIOUS with a negative HIV test resull. And so can your sex partners, even if they show you the negative results of a quick test they took THAT SAME MORNING.

    Safe sex means assuming EVERY man you meet is poz, and may have other STIs that are not obvious to the eye, as well.
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    Sep 22, 2014 6:11 PM GMT
    bigMTs saidI did it in protest of dated, homophobic policies. I want to clarify that I did donate blood, then revoked the donation (after I knew they knew they couldn't officially use it).


    Excellent idea in the same vein as civil disobedience. Let's ALL do that!
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    Sep 22, 2014 10:30 PM GMT
    Art_Deco said

    YOU CAN BE INFECTED AND CONTAGIOUS with a negative HIV test resull. And so can your sex partners, even if they show you the negative results of a quick test they took THAT SAME MORNING.

    Safe sex means assuming EVERY man you meet is poz, and may have other STIs that are not obvious to the eye, as well.


    Of course, everybody can be infected, that's why I am always safe. Not just for myself but for others too. I know exactly how to be safe (not porn movie safe, safe safe), I still go to do tests (always double check, two different places) because condoms can brake anytime, the tiniest little hole is enough. I donate blood because I'm responsible and the chances are minimal.
    I am not a slut, lots of heteros are, and they can donate anytime. That is the problem.
    However there were this fem guy who wanted me to fuck him bareback, only pull my cock out when I cum because coitus interruptus is "super safe".. or I met an other one in Spain who said HIV is a myth, just like holocaust (no comment) I just hope there are not lots of these idiots are out there.

    What if there were a general knowledge test before they get your blood instead of asking whether you're a fag or not.
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    Sep 23, 2014 3:16 AM GMT
    It seems to me that Art_Deco is conflating the drop-in HIV test with the blood-draw type. The drop-in or "quick" test has no place in this conversation, because blood donation involves drawing blood (!!!)

    Concurrent with my blood-donation, three small vials of blood were extracted; I presumed these were for testing purposes. The Red Cross states on its website:
    "The American Red Cross performs laboratory tests for multiple infectious disease markers on every unit of donated blood. Tests are upgraded or replaced with more sensitive technologies as these become available. These tests include:
    Anti-Trypanosoma cruzi, Hepatitis B virus (HBV), Hepatitis C virus (HCV 3.0), Human Immunodeficiency viruses, Types 1 and 2 (HIV 1,2), Human T-Lymphotropic virus (HTLV-I/II), Syphilis (Treponema pallidum), West Nile virus (WNV)
    ".
    This should give the donation-accepting agency an objective snapshot of both 'best-current' HIV status and general sexual proclivity of each donor.

    Given the (seemingly) rigorous testing that meets each unit of blood, why are donors still pre-screened for MSM and tattoos? I suspect it's to appease their far-right-religious financial donors.