If You're in Israel, Go Donate Blood

Haaretz reports,

The Blood Bank at Magen David Adom on Monday stopped delivering blood supply to hospitals, save for urgent and life-saving surgeries, due to a severe shortage in blood reserves. The Blood Bank has a mere 400 O-type blood units, reserves that are not sufficient for a single day.
Head of MDA’s blood services Professor Ayelet Shenar informed hospitals that MDA cannot supply blood units for purposes other than saving life. Professor Shenar said that a recent drop in the number of blood donors has been marked in recent weeks, possibly because of the colder weather and related illnesses.
Professor Shenar said “since a blood unit can be stored for only 35 days, reserves cannot accumulate at the Blood Bank, and donations are necessary on an ongoing basis.”
“1,000-1,200 daily donations are required in order to meet hospital demands, and recently the number of daily donations has dropped to approximately 700,” she added.

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2 thoughts on “If You're in Israel, Go Donate Blood

  1. SOURCE:,7340,L-3350187,00.html
    Blood Bank: We are not homophobes, just cautious
    Director of MDA’s blood services rejects criticism, says decision not to use blood taken from homosexuals does not stem from homophobic reasons but rather from concern for patients
    From / Published: 01.09.07, 14:37
    Last week the Blood Bank announced an emergency situation and called on the public to donate blood in order to increase the level of donations required for operations and emergency surgery.
    The lack of blood donations was so serious that it was reported that surgeries not deemed crucial would be postponed.
    On Tuesday of this week, “Our Colors”, the Meretz party’s gay youth movement is set to convene a conference calling for the change of policies upheld at the Magen David Adom’s blood services according to which homosexuals are not permitted to donate blood. Members of the movement are protesting the said policy arguing that it is “homophobic.”
    In response to the outrage against MDA and the blood bank, Professor Ayelet Shenar, head of the blood services at MDA explained the considerations that guided the institution clarifying that the decision not to use the blood of homosexuals does not stem form homophobia, but rather from concern for those receiving the blood donations.
    “Many patients and casualties are in need of blood transfusions as life saving treatment. The only way to provide them with the treatment they need is by giving them blood donations from healthy people. This is because there is still no substitute for human blood, and artificial or synthetic blood cannot be produced.
    Several components can be produced from one blood donation which can help several patients, but this is on condition that whoever donated the blood is healthy and leads a healthy life style that doesn’t put him or her at risk of catching diseases that can be transmitted via blood transfusions, such as AIDS or hepatitis.
    No nation takes blood from homosexuals
    Many reports in world literature have noted the rise in the contraction of AIDS among young homosexual men. Even epidemiological data published by the Health Ministry shows a concerning rise in the contraction of AIDS among young homosexual men in Israel, including cases discovered following a blood donation.
    To date, there is no single country worldwide that permits the use of blood donated by homosexuals. In Sweden a bill permitting the use of blood donated by homosexuals was recently rejected as it was decided that the time was not ripe.
    Therefore, those arguing that there is not a high risk of contracting the disease among the community are wrong, this is a misleading assumption that spreads a false sense of safety that may lead to unprotected and dangerous sexual conduct. It is advisable and much more important to focus on the real problem – finding ways of increasing awareness and caution with the aim of preventing the spreading of the disease.
    It is important to note that all the blood donations undergo stringent tests at the blood bank to find possible viruses, however it is not always possible to identify them due to the “window period:” This is the timeframe that transpires from the moment a person is infected with the virus and until the tests (however sophisticated) are able to identify the contraction of the disease. The “window period” can last from weeks to months (according to the virus), and those exposed to it are likely to transmit it and harm patients receiving the donations, despite their blood tests showing up as “normal.”
    Phrasing of the questionnaire according to homo-lesbian representative
    The questionnaire outlines 12 different situations in which donors are asked not to donate blood, including those where the exposure to AIDS or hepatitis is high. Donors are not required to specify their sexual orientations and the questionnaire does not express a view pertaining to various lifestyles … MORE here:,7340,L-3350187,00.html

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