Another Blood Battle?

BCN 126 cover

This originally appeared in BCN issue 126, August 2014

Giving blood is still tricky for many bis…

Parliament will debate the ‘blood ban’ again soon with a Private Member’s Bill due to be presented on October 22nd.  Until 2011 men who have sex with men (MSM) were not allowed to donate blood in the UK, with lesser restrictions on their female partners.  For the last three years, this has been replaced by a policy of a 12 month debarment from donation after sex with, respectively, another man or with an MSM in the previous year.

This will probably be a more complex battle: the lifetime ban was clearly a reaction to 80s AIDS panic, but there are arguments about whether removing all discrimination will have an impact on the purity of the blood supply.