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Why is there still a ban on donating blood here, if you lived in the UK between 1980 -1996 for over a year ?


PUFF DADDY

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Why is there still a ban on donating blood here, if you lived in the UK between 1980 -1996 for over a year ?

I used to donate blood from when I turned 18, it was a done thing in our Family, I went off to London for 5yrs and returned in 95 and again started to give blood, until there was a scare re mad cow's disease over in the UK and there was a ban put in place for anyone who lived for a yr or more in the UK from '80 to '96 as per attached.

http://www.giveblood.ie/Become_a_Donor/Common_deferrals_for_blood_donors.pdf

What I can't understand, what about the UK, what "precautions" are taken to "screen" for mad cows if any on those that donate blood over there ?

Is this ban still necessary, I am sure there are plenty of folk like myself that would gladly donate if this ban was lifted.

Thoughts ?
 


Tin Foil Hat

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The simple answer it that they would rather a person die due to lack of blood than accept the minuscule possibility that that person would survive, contract mad-cow, and sue them.
 

Angler

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Given the freedom and frequency of travel between the two jurisdictions , I can't see the point in it . How many weren't resident , but regularly attended sporting and music events,did they abstain from eating the deadly burgers and pies .
 

Con Gallagher

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I presume it's to ensure confidence in the blood bank? (Which I also assume is the reason for excluding men who have slept with men). I doubt if either can be justified on medical opinion.
 

Gibby

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The simple answer it that they would rather a person die due to lack of blood than accept the minuscule possibility that that person would survive, contract mad-cow, and sue them.
Any chance of a source for this emotive and apparently bitter comment???

To put my own cards on the 'table' though - I have given blood over 90 times to date so this restriction has not affected my ability to donate.
 

Interista

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The simple answer it that they would rather a person die due to lack of blood than accept the minuscule possibility that that person would survive, contract mad-cow, and sue them.
I think this is it in a nutshell.

I have a friend who used to work for the Blood Bank (or whatever they're calling themselves these days). She told me it was widely acknowledged among staff that their restrictions on doners were ridiculously strict, and that there was also an unreasonably high number ofl 'non-bleds' ie people who turn up hoping to donate but are turned away. That's happened to me on more than one occasion: reasons include having been in a (very borderline) 'malarial' area in the previous year or having had an (again very borderline) low iron content in my blood. My friend reckoned that everyone at the Blood Bank knew this was just over caution on their part. They're still reeling from the Hepatitis B scandal, and don't want anything of the type happening again.
 

Angler

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Any chance of a source for this emotive and apparently bitter comment???

To put my own cards on the 'table' though - I have given blood over 90 times to date so this restriction has not affected my ability to donate.
Michael Noonan could probably fill you in on that one .
 

Samell

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Turned away countless times myself due to travel, medication, and living in UK between the banned years.
Surely there are parts of the blood unaffected by the bugs, medication or burgers that could be used even for research into looking for a test for BSE/CJD.

I have often heard stories of operations cancelled due to lack of blood, Certan Death v million to one shot of potential death? Hmmmm no brainer really.

Mark it research or emergency only.
 

Tin Foil Hat

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Any chance of a source for this emotive and apparently bitter comment???
Yea, It's in their mission statement :roll:
Of course I don't have a source. But this policy is quite obviously put in place by bean-counters.
 

Tea Party Patriot

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I used to donate blood from when I turned 18, it was a done thing in our Family, I went off to London for 5yrs and returned in 95 and again started to give blood, until there was a scare re mad cow's disease over in the UK and there was a ban put in place for anyone who lived for a yr or more in the UK from '80 to '96 as per attached.

http://www.giveblood.ie/Become_a_Donor/Common_deferrals_for_blood_donors.pdf

What I can't understand, what about the UK, what "precautions" are taken to "screen" for mad cows if any on those that donate blood over there ?

Is this ban still necessary, I am sure there are plenty of folk like myself that would gladly donate if this ban was lifted.

Thoughts ?
The reality is the possibility of litigation and having to pay large amounts of compensation. Given the extremely long incubation period of CJD there is still a strong possibility that a lot of people are carrying it and don't know it. If the blood companies were to take donations from high risk individuals and it spread the disease as a result then it would be the Hep C scandal all over again. Their insurance companies just won't underwrite it.
 
D

Dylan2010

The reality is the possibility of litigation and having to pay large amounts of compensation. Given the extremely long incubation period of CJD there is still a strong possibility that a lot of people are carrying it and don't know it. If the blood companies were to take donations from high risk individuals and it spread the disease as a result then it would be the Hep C scandal all over again. Their insurance companies just won't underwrite it.
what do British insurers do in the UK?
 

PUFF DADDY

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The reality is the possibility of litigation and having to pay large amounts of compensation. Given the extremely long incubation period of CJD there is still a strong possibility that a lot of people are carrying it and don't know it. If the blood companies were to take donations from high risk individuals and it spread the disease as a result then it would be the Hep C scandal all over again. Their insurance companies just won't underwrite it.
But as Dylan says what do British insurers do & if you look at their population.
 

PUFF DADDY

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The reality is the possibility of litigation and having to pay large amounts of compensation. Given the extremely long incubation period of CJD there is still a strong possibility that a lot of people are carrying it and don't know it. If the blood companies were to take donations from high risk individuals and it spread the disease as a result then it would be the Hep C scandal all over again. Their insurance companies just won't underwrite it.
This is prob the case and due to the Hep C scandal etc, but it does take a lot of the irish population that are unable to donate blood, but would gladly do it, if there was a screening etc...cost for sure prob comes into it to.
 

Ren84

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Can you not just lie on the form and not tell them you were living in Britain? I've wanted to give blood in the past but decided against it due to the ban. Been tempted on a few occasions to simply not tell them I lived in England however.
 

Gibby

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Can you not just lie on the form and not tell them you were living in Britain? I've wanted to give blood in the past but decided against it due to the ban. Been tempted on a few occasions to simply not tell them I lived in England however.
I suppose if a person lies on the form, then maybe doesn't that indicate they are more interested in being SEEN to be donating, rather than doing it to help others who are sick and need a gift of blood which can and will help them to get better???

I mean why would I risk someone else's health by giving them a 'possibly-less-than-perfect' gift? I know the rules are strict but I think of the patient at the other end, a few days later that will be hooked up to that unit of blood.

For me - Giving blood isn't about my rights/feelings (I still grimace at the needles - HATE them!!!), it's about THAT sick person who needs to receive it...
 

Tin Foil Hat

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Can you not just lie on the form and not tell them you were living in Britain? I've wanted to give blood in the past but decided against it due to the ban. Been tempted on a few occasions to simply not tell them I lived in England however.
Ah here, I know I said that this rule is absurdly strict, but giving blood is a serious business. If they don't want your blood, then don't trick them into taking it.
 

Tea Party Patriot

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This is prob the case and due to the Hep C scandal etc, but it does take a lot of the irish population that are unable to donate blood, but would gladly do it, if there was a screening etc...cost for sure prob comes into it to.
Interesting one here from the BBC: BBC NEWS | Health | Blood test for vCJD 'unrealistic'

However, in 2004, a study of 13,000 appendix and tonsil samples revealed that thousands of people may be unknowingly harbouring vCJD and raising concerns over the possible extent of vCJD transmission via blood transfusions.
Tests to screen potential blood donors for vCJD are in the pipeline, but experts are concerned about their use because some of the time the tests will incorrectly flag up people as infected when actually they are not.
And it is not known whether people with correct positive test results would ever develop symptoms of vCJD, and if they would, how long this would take.

On the statistics the UK would seem to be disproportionally out of sync with all other countries, making up the vast block of cases:

CDC - Fact Sheet - Variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease (vCJD)

Variant CJD (vCJD) is a rare, degenerative, fatal brain disorder in humans. Although experience with this new disease is limited, evidence to date indicates that there has never been a case of vCJD transmitted through direct contact of one person with another. However, a case of probable transmission of vCJD through transfusion of blood components from an asymptomatic donor who subsequently developed the disease has been reported.

Since variant CJD was first reported in 1996, a total of 217 patients with this disease from 11 countries have been identified. As of October 2009, variant CJD cases have been reported from the following countries:

170 from the United Kingdom,
25 from France,
5 from Spain,
4 from Ireland,
3 from the United States,
3 in the Netherlands,
2 in Portugal,
2 in Italy,
and one each from Canada, Japan, and Saudi Arabia. Two of the three U.S. cases, two of the four cases from Ireland and the single cases from Canada and Japan were likely exposed to the BSE agent while residing in the United Kingdom. One of the 25 French cases may also have been infected in the United Kingdom.
 

Tea Party Patriot

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Can you not just lie on the form and not tell them you were living in Britain? I've wanted to give blood in the past but decided against it due to the ban. Been tempted on a few occasions to simply not tell them I lived in England however.
Way to go, just lie and possibly endanger the lives of people who may receive your blood..
 

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