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Iceland May Soon Lift Ban On Gay Men From Donating Blood

Iceland May Soon Lift Ban On Gay Men From Donating Blood

Andie Fontaine
Words by
Photos by
Photographer's Mate 3rd Class Jeremy L. Grisham

Published September 3, 2018

Iceland’s Ministry of Health is currently reviewing its regulations regarding the prohibition against gay men from donating blood, Fréttablaðið reports. The results of this review can be expected in the next week or month.

While there are still some countries that ban gay men from giving blood, even the US lifted its ban in 2015.

In Denmark, their regulations on the matter will change at the beginning of 2019, where gay men who have not had sex with other men in four months can donate blood. Iceland, however, still issues a blanket ban on all gay men who had ever had sex with another man from giving blood.

This may soon change.

The Directorate of Health points out that incidences of HIV infection in Iceland are in almost entirely equal proportions between gay and straight people; 150 to 148, respectively. As such, the original reasoning behind the ban no longer applies.

Minister of Health Svandís Svavarsdóttir specifically cited Denmark as the reason for wanting to review Iceland’s regulations. The matter will be reviewed by the Ministry, in cooperation with the Blood Bank and epidemiologists.


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