From Iceland — Dire Need For Blood Donations, Gay And Bisexual Men Still Not Allowed To Donate

Dire Need For Blood Donations, Gay And Bisexual Men Still Not Allowed To Donate

Published May 4, 2022

Andie Sophia Fontaine
Photo by
ec-jpr/Creative Commons

The Blood Bank is in dire need of blood donations, RÚV reports, especially those with the blood types O-, O+ and A+.

If you appreciate our journalism, join our High Five Club. As well as helping us to keep the lights on, we’ve got discounts on tours to all members, access to goodies such as discounts in our online shop, new Grapevine issues sent by email, access to our AMA and more!

However, not everyone who may want to donate blood will be able to.

On the home page of the Blood Bank, amongst those who are prohibited from donating blood are men who have, at any point, had sex with another man. Women who have had sex with a man who has had sex with another man may not give blood for 12 months, and anyone who has been raped is also prohibited from donating blood for 12 months.

Grapevine readers may remember that last September, former Minister of Health Svandís Svavarsdóttir had proposed a bill which would allow gay and bisexual men to donate blood if they had abstained from so-called “risky sex” for four months prior to donating.

This bill never came to fruition, and as such the blanket ban remains in place. For comparison purposes, the American Red Cross only requires a three-month abstinence period for gay and bisexual men prior to blood donation.

Support The Reykjavík Grapevine!
Buy subscriptions, t-shirts and more from our shop right here!

Show Me More!