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National gay blood drive aims to lift donation ban : Swingers Discussion 224913
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TOPIC: National gay blood drive aims to lift donation ban
Created by: sa_interracialcpl
Original Starting post for this thread:
(CNN) -- Activists are organizing the first national gay blood drive Friday in an effort to combat the Food and Drug Administration's ban on blood donations from gay and bisexual men.

The FDA bans donations from men who have had sex with other men since 1977, saying there is an increased risk of exposure to and transmission of infectious diseases -- including HIV -- in male-to-male sexual encounters.

"FDA uses multiple layers of safeguards in its approach to ensuring blood safety," the government agency's website says. The FDA screens all potential blood donors based on risk factors and signs of infections.

Blood banks have been instructed to ask male donors if they have ever had sex with a man. If the potential donor responds "yes," he is instantly removed from the donor pool for life.

The policy started in the 1980s when people didn't know how the deadly virus that causes AIDS spread. At the time, there wasn't a good test to detect whether HIV was present in donated blood, and HIV was getting into the nation's blood supply. Scientists also knew that a disproportionate number of gay men were affected by the virus.

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I cannot give blood because the Plavix Im on,,I used to give twice a year every year.

Mickey.

Rayne LA
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I used to give blood all the time, but since I have been diabetic, I have not.

I should check and see if they like extra sweet...

Lakeside CA
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I was discouraged from giving blood for a long time because I have some unusual blood marker which is not commonly tested for and causes severe reactions in a small number of people. I forget what the deal is. I should check to see if this is still a problem.

I also used to have a controlled substance in my veins 24/7 (legally). I don't know if that's a problem or not.

Unlike some people who search for excuses, I've simply been lazy. I wonder if our promiscuity is a red flag?

Chesapeake VA
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Deanna and I are both barred for life from giving blood. She lived in Germany during the BSE (mad cow) break out.

I've been in country's with known viruses that along with Mad Cow, there is no current procedure to test for it.

It's a shame, but we understand.

San Antonio TX
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My son has been donating blood twice a year since he turned 16 and his high school had a blood a drive. He's 21, and has been at it ever since.

Allenhurst NJ
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Nke:

Blood donations are low for many reasons, but ignorance isn't exactly one of them.

I woukd say that it has more to do with losing something of yourself, something which weakens your body for a while. Then there is that whole needle thing that cannot be gotten around.

Personally I wouldn't mind giving blood if I knew what the hell is causing my medical problems and I had time to do so. But I have neither the time or the knowledge of why I have never ending constipation and neither does the VA.

I were deployed to Afghanistan, a nation with more Mosquitos than sand. (I jest) living conditions were less than ideal, and if you can name it... Some mosquito had it there. So should I be donating blood? Probably not.

Time, well, I don't have time to go looking for blood donation places and or to sit down and donate. I'm poor, got to work... Or be ready to work at a moments notice...

More just not knowing of where and when and being around those places at those times.

Hazle Township PA
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"The HIV test results will be collected and sent to the FDA to provide evidence of rejected willing and healthy donors in hopes of lifting the ban."

Isn't one of the reasons blood donations are low is because people don't want to know if they have HIV?

Pittsburgh PA
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Ryan James Yezak, lead organizer of the blood drive, is making a documentary about discrimination based on sexual orientation. He said he wants to convey on a national level how much blood the gay community could potentially contribute to the blood supply if given a chance to donate.

"This ban is medically unwarranted, and this drive is the only way we can motion for change," he said. "The gay community shouldn't be written off as diseased."

Blood donations were down by 10% across the country in June, according to the American Red Cross, which received about 50,000 fewer donations than expected. Ban on gay blood donors gets closer look Blood donors wanted

2012: Blood donations decline, U.S. ban on gay donors is examined

The ban is not discriminatory or based on any judgment concerning a donor's sexual orientation, according to the FDA. The policy statement is based on the documented increased risk of transmissible infections.

The American Medical Association voted in June to oppose the FDA ban.

"The lifetime ban on blood donation for men who have sex with men is discriminatory and not based on sound science," said AMA board member Dr. William Kobler.

The AMA is advocating for a new policy to ensure blood donation bans or deferrals are based on an individual's level of health risks instead of sexual orientation alone.

Yezak is urging gay and bisexual men on Friday to visit designated blood donation centers, where a mobile HIV testing center will be located. He's asking the men to get tested, and if their HIV results are negative, to try and donate blood.

The HIV test results will be collected and sent to the FDA to provide evidence of rejected willing and healthy donors in hopes of lifting the ban.

San Antonio TX
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(CNN) -- Activists are organizing the first national gay blood drive Friday in an effort to combat the Food and Drug Administration's ban on blood donations from gay and bisexual men.

The FDA bans donations from men who have had sex with other men since 1977, saying there is an increased risk of exposure to and transmission of infectious diseases -- including HIV -- in male-to-male sexual encounters.

"FDA uses multiple layers of safeguards in its approach to ensuring blood safety," the government agency's website says. The FDA screens all potential blood donors based on risk factors and signs of infections.

Blood banks have been instructed to ask male donors if they have ever had sex with a man. If the potential donor responds "yes," he is instantly removed from the donor pool for life.

The policy started in the 1980s when people didn't know how the deadly virus that causes AIDS spread. At the time, there wasn't a good test to detect whether HIV was present in donated blood, and HIV was getting into the nation's blood supply. Scientists also knew that a disproportionate number of gay men were affected by the virus.

San Antonio TX
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TOPIC: National gay blood drive aims to lift donation ban