Homosexuals prevented from donating blood

If you want to donate blood in the Czech Republic, you will be asked to fill in a form stating whether you are homosexual or heterosexual. If you are gay, you might be turned down, as many transfusion stations refuse to take blood from homosexuals. Gay groups are outraged, while blood donor authorities say the rule is in line with the rest of Europe. Lucie Krupickova has the story:

Homosexuals wanting to donate blood in the Czech Republic may have difficulty, simply because of their sexual orientation. Transfusion stations rank homosexuals in the same risk group as prostitutes, drug addicts and criminals, claiming the probability of disease being transmitted through infected blood is higher among gay people. The Czech Health Ministry, however, told Radio Prague that there was no such evidence.

The leader of the gay rights group SOHO, Jiri Hromada, says transfusion stations are discriminating against homosexuals. He argues that a gay person living with a regular partner will be immediately refused, whereas a heterosexual who may have several sexual partners will be allowed to donate blood. Hromada says such behavior is against common sense, against the Constitution and also against the Declaration of Basic Rights and Freedoms. SOHO is ready to file a complaint with the Czech Constitutional Court.

The body regulating blood transfusions says there are no regulations excluding homosexuals from donating blood purely because of their sexual orientation. At the same time, the organisation confirmed that sexual intercourse between two men was, at least according to Czech regulations, considered to be a risk factor. These regulations are compatible with those in the EU, and therefore it is unlikely that the homosexual minority will succeed in court.

Author: Lucie Krupičková
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