LISTEN LIVE: This American Life



In Orlando, Confusion Over Policy On Blood Donations From Gay Men14:00

This article is more than 6 years old.

In the wake of the Orlando shootings, thousands of people lined up to give blood over the weekend.

"I understand that the blood banks are accepting blood from everyone," said Orlando City Commissioner Patty Sheehan on Sunday. "I think that's appropriate right now because there has been a ban on gay men donating blood. And, I think it's appropriate right now, you can screen the blood and maybe this tragedy is the one thing that took that ban away."

However, the information was wrong and the local OneBlood donation center quickly corrected her, tweeting that all FDA guidelines remained in place. Currently, the FDA prohibits blood donations from gay men who have not been celibate for at least one year. The frustration felt by many members of the LGBT community has prompted questions of whether the ban can be lifted.


Carey Goldberg, co-host of WBUR's CommonHealth blog. She tweets @commonhealth.

This segment aired on June 14, 2016.


Alison Bruzek Twitter Associate Producer, Radio Boston
Alison Bruzek was a producer for Radio Boston.