FDA Signals Willingness To Shift On Blood Donation Restrictions For Gay Men
The agency opens the issue for public comment, encouraging alternative policy suggestions that are backed by scientific evidence. Meanwhile, other regulations are causing a severe blood shortage this year.
U.S. Opens Door To A Change In Blood Donation Policy For Gay Men
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration opened the door on Tuesday to a change in its blood donor deferral recommendations, which currently prohibit donations from gay men for a year following their last sexual encounter in order to reduce the risk of transmitting HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. In December the FDA overturned a 30-year ban on all blood donations from men who have sex with men, saying the change was based on science showing an indefinite ban was not necessary to prevent transmission of the human immunodeficiency virus. The FDA is now signaling it may go further. (Clarke, 7/26)
FDA Explores Changes To Blood Donation For Gay Men
The Food and Drug Administration is seeking comments on the possibility of changing its policy of requiring a one year deferral period before gay men can donate blood. The FDA said in a notice in the Federal Register that it is looking for comments on the potential to use “individual risk assessments” rather than the current blanket one year deferral for men who have sex with men, intended to guard against the spread of HIV. (Sullivan, 7/26)
American Red Cross Calls For Emergency Blood Donations Amid Shortage
The humanitarian organization currently has less than a five-day blood supply on hand, according to a statement. Shortages are often caused when more blood and platelets are distributed to hospitals faster than donations are coming in, according to the organization. (Bowerman, 7/26)
St. Louis Public Radio:
Amid Shortage, Red Cross Urges Blood Donations. Why Is It So Bad This Year?
Blood supplies are low again this year, and the American Red Cross is extending an urgent call for donations that began two weeks ago. Shortages are common in the summer. Many potential donors are on vacation, and blood drives at high schools have to be put on hold. But this year, blood suppliers are feeling the crunch several weeks earlier than expected. (Bouscaren, 7/26)