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American Medical Association

FDA panel considers lifting ban on blood donations by gay men

FDA panel considers lifting ban on blood donations by gay men

A U.S. Food and Drug Administration panel has begun to consider whether to overturn a long-standing ban against accepting blood donations from gay men. On Thursday, the FDA’s Advisory Committee on Blood and Tissue Safety and Availability heard testimony from advocates who say that the lifetime ban is discriminatory and that technological advances have made it obsolete. “The ban on gay and bisexual men ... was enacted in 1985 and focuses on sexual orientation more than the risk and science itself,” said Caleb Laieski, a 19-year-old gay activist who has sued the FDA to overturn the ban. “A recent study by the American Red Cross estimates that lifting the blood...

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