The Federal health officials have shown readiness to lifting up the 32-year lifetime ban on blood donations from bisexual and gay men. However, the major restrictions that define as to who can donate blood will continue. The blanket ban will be replaced by new policy allowing men, having a sexual relationship, with a man in the previous year to give blood. Although the period of one-year has faced a lot of criticism, the new policy matches those in other developed countries including Japan, the United Kingdom and Australia.
Policy Fails to Justify Gay and Bisexual Men
A gay rights activists said that the redefined policy although falls short of expectations can be considered one-step in the right direction. According to Human Rights Campaign’s, David Stacy, the policy continues to disgrace the bisexual and gay men. Stacy, member of the largest gay rights group in America, said that new policy fails to do justice to bisexual and gay men, especially after the updated scientific research and blood screening results have come into light.
Change in Policy Based on Latest Screening Results
The government of the United States overturned the restriction on blood donation by gay men after the latest scientific examinations showed that a permanent ban is not required for preventing the transmission of HIV that causes AIDS. According to Food and Drug Administration Department, it changed its decision after examining the latest screening test results. Deputy Director of the FDA’s biologics division, Dr. Peter Marks said that the deferral period of 12-month has been framed after analyzing the currently available best scientific evidence concerning the US population.
Policy Revision to Protect Blood Supply
According to Stephen Ostroff, M.D., the Acting Commissioner of FDA, it is the responsibility of his department to ensure that a high level of safety of the blood product is maintained as the lives of the people who use it depend on it. He further said that FDA has taken great measures to make sure that the revision in the policy has a sound backing from science.