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Gay blood welcomed in Portugal

Marc Shoffman March 29, 2006

70,000 new donors are needed in France each year. (Getty Images)

The Portuguese gay community are now free to donate blood, after officials announced new blood screening tests last weekend.

Officials have deemed a ban on gay blood donors as irrelevant after the introduction of new technology which will help detect HIV infected blood.

Jose de Almeida Goncalves, head of the National Blood Institute, told Agence France Presse, “The current trend is toward equality of criteria for all regardless of their sexual orientation.”

He highlighted trends of heterosexual HIV contraction and better blood screening methods.

Gay donors are currently banned in the UK, US and Canada.

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