Israel will allow gay and bisexual men
to donate blood without restrictions.
The announcement, made on Thursday,
came from Health Minister Nitzan Horowitz, who is gay.
“Today we removed the degrading and
irrelevant questions in the blood donation questionnaire,” Horowitz
wrote in a Facebook post. “Every blood donor who comes with the
goal of saving a life will receive equal treatment, no matter what
his gender or sexual orientation (is), whether he is LGBT or
The announcement was welcomed by
“This is a landmark moment for the
entire LGBTQ community in Israel and a step closer toward equality
for everyone,” said
A Wider Bridge, a U.S.-based organization that supports Israel's
The FDA adopted a lifetime ban on gay
men donating blood in 1983 in response to the AIDS crisis. In 2015,
the agency relaxed the ban to allow for donations from men who have
sex with men who have abstained from sexual contact for 12 months.
Last year, the FDA shortened the deferral period to 3 months.