"Blood Ban" update
The Secretary of State for Health has been challenged by Liberal Democrat Spokesperson for Women and Equality, Lorely Burt MP, over the continued complete ban on gay and bisexual men, and one-year ban on their straight or bisexual female partners, donating blood. She also highlighted the issue of how would-be donors who are rejected are treated.
This week Lorely tabled three written questions on the subject:
- To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many complaints her Department received from men who have had sex with men that they were treated disrespectfully by blood donation staff in 2005.
- To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how often her Department reviews medical evidence which forms the basis for blood donation rules that (a) permanently exclude men who have had sex with men and (b) temporarily exclude female sexual partners of those men; when the last review of the medical evidence was carried out; and when the next review is scheduled to take place.
- To ask the Secretary of State for Health, if she will ask the National Blood Service to issue guidance to its staff aimed at ensuring that men who have sex with men are treated with respect when they are told they are unable to give blood.