Gay community holds first national blood drive in hopes of lifting ban on donations
6:00 AM, Jul 12, 2013
8:11 AM, Jul 12, 2013
KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Members of the gay community are hoping to change the ban on blood donations from men who have sex with men. July 12 will be the first annual National Gay Blood Drive.
In 1985 the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) began enforcing a ban on blood donations from men who have had sex with other men anytime after 1977 for fear of drawing HIV-contaminated blood.
Though much has happened in the last 30 years, and even with today's advanced HIV screenings, the FDA hasn't changed their stance on the ban.
Recently, the American Medical Association came out against the ban.
All across the country on July 12, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. gay and bisexual men can show up to a designated blood donation center. Men will be tested, and once the test is negative, they can attempt to donate blood.
When the men are rejected from giving blood, their HIV test results will be compiled and delivered to the FDA, to show the administration how much the gay community could contribute if they were allowed to donate.