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Risky behavior should be the criteria for blood donation

by Editorial Staff in Health & Body , 07 augustus 2011


The COC calls upon the government and Sequin Bloedvoorziening (blood services) to adapt the criteria on blood donations. Sanquin, providing blood services in Holland, is not happy with a D66 (liberal democrats) proposal to no longer exclude gays from donating blood purely on the basis of their sexual preferences.

The COC responded to a motion on the D66 congress in May , which was accepted with a large majority. At the moment gay men are not allowed to donate blood because HIV and other STD infection rates are higher amongst them than amongst heterosexual people.

But the COC thinks ‘risky sexual behavior’ should be the criteria, not whether someone’s gay or not. ‘These standards also exclude men that have had a monogamous sex life for 40 years,’ says the COC. ‘The issue should be whether someone is having safe sex instead of whether they’re having sex with men. Heterosexual people can pose the same dangers if they have many different sexual contacts.’

The COC takes Italy and Spain as examples; gay men can donate blood if they didn’t have risky sexual contacts. It didn’t affect the safety of blood services there,’ says the COC. The government said earlier it wanted to address the issue. Minister Marja van Bijsterveldt (Emancipation) said she was aware of the issue and wanted to see whether the exclusion of gays should be addressed.









 







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