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Reply #21: Actually, all stats would be what is termed "self-reported," and therefore suspect. [View All]

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nealmhughes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 11:01 AM
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21. Actually, all stats would be what is termed "self-reported," and therefore suspect.
Edited on Sun Dec-06-09 11:02 AM by nealmhughes
People lie. People have different ideas of what "gay" constitutes, even men who have sex sometimes or always with other men may or may not identify as "gay."

Any stat would be more or less either a guesstimation or an estimation using charts and SSPS or other stastical software.

By the way, there are those who are assuredly "gay" and are celibate and have always been celibate. They are obviously no risk for HIV if they have never been exposed to blood or body fluids in any form, yet they are gay. I am sure that the guidelines are for ensuring the safety of the public in the most general way and not for discrimination per se. The Red Cross does not care from what class of people they get their blood so long as it is within their guidelines.

By the way, people in the US who have spent X amount of time from a time frame of Y-Z months during a certain time period in the UK are not allowed to give blood in the US but can anywhere in the Eurozone. Make sense? No. A holdover from Madcow hysteria in the UK, even though we had our own here in the US.

I had platelets last week, by the way, and all I could think about was the class of people I saw hanging outside the "We buy blood" center the day before. They did not appear to be hard working folks out of work and looking to make a happy holiday for their family by a long shot. It looked like Meth Central. But I took 2 units with no quals, I figure my HIV is under control and cancer trumps HIV for a short life. I wish I could give blood, as I am
B Negative, but I cannot and I accept it. I am willing to face this "discrimination" of being gay and HIV positive and having lived in the UK and avoid internal Red Cross politics in which I have zero voice and rightly so long as they do not discriminate on who gets the blood!

In short, in public health, there is no easy answer: by and large the establishment errs on the side of safety for the public good. Discrimination? Perhaps, but one that is not aimed directly at one single class of people, rather at the likelihood of spreading disease due to people refusing to get tested and also people lying. Sadly, people are apt to do both; lie and refuse to get tested, and that is simply the way of all flesh.

Frankly, when it comes to HIV or gay issues, this one is low on my totem pole by far.
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