Tip Line: 574-344-5557 | news57@abc57.com

FDA modifies blood donor policies following donation shortage

The US Food and Drug Administration has made several changes to its policy on who is eligible to donate blood as the nation experiences a blood shortage due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The American Red Cross estimates that every two seconds, someone in the U.S. needs blood.

The FDA has encouraged state and local governments to include blood donation as an essential activity, which can be done within social distancing guidelines.

The FDA says studies and other data have shown their policies on donor eligibility criteria can be modified without compromising the safety of the blood supply. The modifications are expected to remain in place following the COVID-19 pandemic travel restrictions.

Among others, the FDA is making the following changes:

For male donors who would have been deferred for having sex with another man: the agency is changing the recommended deferral period from 12 months to 3 months.

For female donors who would have been deferred for having sex with a man who had sex with another man: the agency is changing the recommended deferral period from 12 months to 3 months.

For those with recent tattoos and piercings: the agency is changing the recommended deferral period from 12 months to 3 months.

For those who have traveled to malaria-endemic areas (and are residents of malaria non-endemic countries): the agency is changing the recommended deferral period from 12 months to 3 months. In addition, the guidance provides notice of an alternate procedure that permits the collection of blood and blood components from such donors without a deferral period, provided the blood components are pathogen-reduced using an FDA-approved pathogen reduction device.

For those who spent time in certain European countries or on military bases in Europe who were previously considered to have been exposed to a potential risk of transmission of Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease or Variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease, the agency is eliminating the recommended deferrals and is recommending allowing reentry of these donors.

Share this article:
Are you sure you want to delete this comment?
Close

0 Comments

Post a comment
Be the first to leave a comment!
Are you sure you want to delete this comment?