Gay & Lesbian Blood Donation

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Joined in 2011
May 20, 2013, 13:50

Hi everyone. Something was just brought to my attention – that some members of the gay & lesbian community are not allowed to give blood. Does anyone have current rules/legislation or information about this?

Healthy blood is the only cause for concern I can see. Do blood collection places need to know in your records if you're gay? Just wondering…

Joined in 2005
May 20, 2013, 16:39

Hi there

There are rules about who can and cant donate blood. (Edit – these are AUSTRALIAN rules. the rules will vary in other countries. Sometimes Significantly. In the USA the Pay for blood donations for example. Thats considered unethical in australia for example and so on)….

They have been challenged and reviewed – with the last review being done (that I am aware of anyway) in May 2012.

The review is here

The rules currently – are ….

You can never give blood if:

You are HIV positive

You have hepatitis B

You have or have had hepatitis C

You have ever injected yourself or been injected with drugs not prescribed by a doctor or dentist (even if this was only once)

You can not give Blood IF in the past 12 months, you have/or had:

Oral or anal sex with another man, even ‘safer sex’ using a condom (if you are a man)

Sex with a man who has had oral or anal sex with another man (if you are a woman)

Sex with a partner who has HIV or hepatitis C

Sex with a partner who has hepatitis B, unless you have been vaccinated and/or are immune on our testing

Sex with a partner who has ever injected themselves with drugs not prescribed by a doctor or dentist

Sex with a male or female sex worker

A blood transfusion, excluding transfusions of your own blood

Hepatitis or been in close contact with someone with hepatitis

Been in prison

Sex with anyone who lives in, or has come from, a country considered to have a high rate of HIV infection.

You must also

be fit, healthy and not suffering from a cold, flu or other illness at the time of donation or in the previous 7 days

be aged between 16-70 years (in QLD and WA 16-17 year olds require parental consent)

weigh more than 45kg

drink up in the 24 hours before donation, especially in warm weather and have at least 3 good-sized glasses of water/juice in the 3 hours before donating.

eat something in the 3 hours before donating

bring at least one form of photo identification ID.

There are also some restrictions based on travel (for example based on possible exposure to mad cow disease in the UK )

These details can be found on the red cross website

There is some background to this

Although Australia started screening Blood donations for HIV quite early – there were cases of transmission

(The story of one is given in Brysce Courneys Book – April Fools Day – - Warning – I openly sob when I read this one)

Also there is a detection delay when newly infected people are carrying the virus but the tests will not pick it up…. I dont profess to be an expert on this matter BUT this should give some idea on the issue….

Joined in 2005
May 20, 2013, 16:45

and some more links to some more articles on the issue and review for more reading and opinions. on this area

Joined in 2011
May 21, 2013, 09:16

Thank you so much. Think I will pass this info on…

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