April 06, 2022
The Irish Blood Transfusion Service (IBTS) introduced a reduced blood donor deferral period for men who have sex with men (MSM) and all donors who are taking medication to prevent HIV acquisition. IBTS previously deferred both groups from blood donation for 12 months.
As of March 28, MSM in Ireland many now donate blood four months after their most recent sexual contact with another man if they are otherwise eligible. Additionally, any person who takes pre- or post-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP or PEP) to reduce the risk of contracting HIV is now eligible to donate blood four months after ending their use of those medications.
The IBTS announced the revised eligibility process in December as an interim step toward individual donor risk assessment (IRA), which the organization will introduce later this year. Following the implementation of IRA, a four-month deferral will remain in place for individuals taking PrEP or PEP.
Additional information about blood donor eligibility and MSM in the United States is available on the AABB website.