Representative Guillermo Smith wants to lift ban on gay men from donating bloodThe Floridian

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The movement to “overturn the decades-long ban on gay / bisexual men donating blood” continues to grow as the Florida state representative. Carlos guillermo smith (D), an openly gay man, is promoting what he says is the “groundbreaking” study of ADVANCE organizations to help overturn the ban preventing gay men from donating blood.

“I’m here to invite gay and bi men in the Orlando area to participate in this incredible and historic advanced study here at the LGBTQ Center. This is a great opportunity for us to work together as a community to overturn the ban on gay and bi men donating blood, we need 200 more gay or bi men living in the Orlando area aged 18 to 39 years old, ”said Representative Smith.

The ban was imposed in the 1980s at the height of the HIV / AIDS crisis, when just about all men who contracted HIV died of AIDS. The AIDS epidemic was first known as the “disease of homosexuality” because it began to affect almost exclusively the homosexual community.

Not much was known about the disease when the ban fell, but over the years infection and death rates have declined in favor of medical research, research that has produced a wide range of ” cocktails “to treat life-threatening illnesses. sickness.

But just as AIDS cases have declined over the years, there have been spikes in infections from other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) such as syphilis and gonorrhea.

According to Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), “Gay and bisexual men are also at increased risk of other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), such as syphilis, gonorrhea, and chlamydia. Having another STD can greatly increase your risk of getting or transmitting HIV.

The Floridian spoke today with a gay man in his twenties in Wilton Manors and asked him if he was afraid of contracting HIV. The young man “Blaise”, as he likes to walk by and asked that we don’t use his real name, said he was not afraid of catching HIV because he would be able to treat it. . Blaise also said that Syphillis was circling the community like wildfire and that too could be dealt with.

Additionally, HIV cases in the gay community fell only 7% between 2014 and 2018, with the majority of injections occurring in the same age group that Representative Smith targets when promoting the survey. ADVANCE.

The CDC also claims that 69% of the estimated 38,000 new HIV cases reported in 2018 were from gay and bisexual men.

As the number of HIV cases continues to decline, should the ban be lifted even though 69% of all new cases are in gay men? Should the federal government lift the ban even with such a high rate of infection among gay men?


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