Sinn Féin MLA Colm Gildernew has welcomed the decision to reduce the deferral period for gay men donating blood from 12 months to 3 months.
The party’s Health Spokesperson said:
“I welcome the decision by the health minister to reduce the deferral period for gay men donating blood from 12 months to 3 months following the evidence and advice of Advisory Committee of Safety of Blood, Tissues and Organs (SaBTO).
“This decision will enable more people to donate blood safely. There are many people alive today who have benefited from a blood transfusion.
“In 2016 the then Health Minister, Michelle O’Neill, overturned a previous DUP minister’s continued resistance to lifting the ban on gay men donating blood by following the SaBTO advice.
“The removal of the lifetime ban, just like the current change to a 3-month deferral, will enable more to donate their blood and help save lives.”