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  WINDY CITY TIMES

Quigley, Demings introduce blood-donation bias measure
2020-09-16

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U.S. Reps. Mike Quigley (IL-05), who serves as Vice Chair of the LGBT Equality Caucus, and Val Demings (FL-10) introduced the Science in Blood Donation Act of 2020, which would require the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to revise its blood donation guidance.

The legislation would specifically require the FDA to update its Guidance on Reducing the Risk of Human Immunodeficiency Virus Transmission (HIV) by Blood and Blood Products based on an assessment of current testing accuracy and individual risk-based analysis.

It would also require the FDA to revise the donor questionnaire based on an individual risk assessment of sexual behaviors upon which all donors are evaluated equally, without regard to sexual orientation or gender identity.

Quigley said in a statement, "Over the course of many years, we have made significant progress in rolling back an indefinite ban on blood donations from MSM [men who have sex with men], to a 12-month deferral to the current three-month deferral. This is still not enough."

"This policy is based on fear, stigma and prejudice—not science," Demings said. "Expanding the donor pool by hundreds of thousands of healthy Americans would save lives every day in emergency rooms and hospitals around the country."


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