Israel to allow gay and bisexual men to donate blood – regardless of when they last had sex

  • mwolverine

    Posts: 5728

    Jan 14, 2018 5:20 PM GMT
    Israel to allow gay and bisexual men to donate blood – regardless of when they last had sex

    Israel is set to allow bisexual and gay men to donate blood – regardless of when they last had sex.

    The initiative, which has been hailed as an “important step towards equality” by LGBT activists in the country, will start as a pilot programme in April. 

    The scheme, which was approved by the Health Ministry yesterday, will be launched by Magen David Adom (MDA) – the Israeli equivalent of The Red Cross.

    When bi and gay men donate their blood, MDA will separate the plasma, freeze it and keep it in quarantine for four months.

    The donor will then need to come back four months later for a second donation.

    As long as all tests on the new donation come back negative for infectious diseases, the first blood donation will be approved for general use.

    The plan has been made possible by substantially more advanced tests which screen for HIV and can show an infection soon after it happens, according to reports.

    In June, Israel permitted men who have sex with men to give blood for the first time, providing that they had not had sex within the last 12 months.

    This new step puts Israel ahead of the US in this field, as the American Red Cross follows Food and Drug Administration (FDA) guidelines, which still include a 12-month abstinence period.

    In the UK, the rules surrounding blood donations from men who have sex with men were relaxed last year.

    The deferral period was reduced from 12 months to 12 weeks.

    The US has made no such move, leading people finding out about the rule for the first time to air their fury following the Las Vegas mass shooting in October.

    Israeli member of Parliament Meirav Ben-Ari worked with MDA to create the new pilot scheme.

    She said: “I am happy to take part in the solution of the issue of blood donation from the LGBT community,” according to The Jerusalem Post.

    “For years, there was a frustrating situation in which LGBTs could not donate blood, and when they did, they had to lie about their sexual orientation.

    “Today, this is an important historic step toward equality, and I have had the opportunity to assist in finding the solution.

    “I commend Eli Bin and the ministry for their important decision. This is great news for the community that will enlarge the blood bank and help save lives in Israel.

    “I will continue to operate towards assisting the community in any field necessary.”

    MDA blood services director Professor Eilat Shinar said that the programme “enables a bridge between protecting the safety of blood units and the willingness of the LGBT community to take part in saving lives.”

    Chen Ariely, chairman of the Israel LGBT Task Force, said: “The constant refusal to receive blood donations from male members of the LGBT community, and their requirement to lie, was an insult, but it has come to end.

    “More than 1,500 members of the community took part in discussing a temporary solution and expressed support, until the integration of a component that would enable everybody to donate blood.

    “This initiative positions Israel as one of the most advanced countries in the world in this field and we commend this important step toward equality.”
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 5728

    Jan 15, 2018 2:22 AM GMT
    Hopefully those hatist racist trolls won't flock to defile this thread, too, just because it says Israel in it.

    US experts say gay blood ban years away from being lifted
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jan 16, 2018 10:48 PM GMT
    That's nice dear.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jan 17, 2018 12:06 AM GMT
    mwolverine said
    US experts say gay blood ban years away from being lifted

    A very emotional personal story: It was days after 9/11, and I learned that a blood bank was taking donations to help the survivors at the World Trade Center. I had donated blood regularly for over 30 years, during my Army career and afterwards. I had even organized college blood drives.

    I drove 65 miles to the bank. The screening interview started. The screener got to the point where he asked me if I was homosexual. A question I didn't recall from previous donations. I'm honest and not ashamed; I answered 'Yes'. He then asked if I'd had sex with another man in the last 12 months. Again I answered 'Yes'. Even though they were just oral and handjobs. Maybe giving a Bill Clinton answer would have been smarter.

    He left his computer, saying he needed to consult with his supervisor. He returned and started typing. Finally he turned to me and said I was barred from donating blood. In fact, my Social Security number was now entered into a national data base. Preventing me from ever donating blood anywhere in the US for the rest of my life.

    I rode home on my motorcycle, for the first time in my life feeling dirty and second-class about being gay. To my knowledge after 25 years I'm still barred from giving blood donations in the US. Yet my blood tests, most recently done in November 2017, continue to indicate my blood has not a single impediment to a donation. I'm an ideal donor.

    I've never had a single STD, nothing. My biggest issues are slightly high cholesterol and low sodium. My blood is, for want of better words, nearly perfect. But no one can ever benefit from it.