Can gay and bi men be organ donors?
With restrictions surrounding the ability for gay and bisexual men to donate blood, we investigate whether men who have sex with men are able to donate their organs after death.
- scotth23 / Pixabay
With the possibility that post-death organ donation moving to a system of “presumed consent” or “opt out” in the UK, we find out whether gay and bisexual men, who are forbidden to donate blood, unless they abstain from sex for three months, can actually be donors.
Can gay men be organ donors?
Providing the donor dies in a UK hospital, anyone, including gay bisexual and trans men and women, can be organ donors. The only exception is anyone who has Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease or has had cancer that has spread in the last 12 months.
A person’s sexual orientation is not a factor.
What if I am HIV positive?
The screening process means that both HIV and Hepatitis are screened for, however, if you are found to have HIV it doesn’t necessarily stop you from being able to donate. If you are HIV positive you may be able to donate to someone already living with HIV.
Blood donation rules do not apply in the same way.
According to the NHS, in the UK, you can still donate organs or tissue, even if you have been turned down for blood donations.