Transfusion clinique et biologique : journal de la Societe francaise de transfusion sanguine 2016 7 13() pii 10.1016/j.tracli.2016.06.002
In France, men who have sex with men (MSM) were "permanently deferred" of blood donation. This measure reflected the fact that according to scientific research data, MSM have a higher risk to be infected notably by the human immunodeficiency virus. This "permanent postponement" was the subject of much debate as discrimination criterion. Can ethics be the basis for the reexamination of conditions of access of MSM to blood donation? It seems that ethics can and should in fact be reconvened in the reflections. The donor selection criteria should be regularly reviewed in the light of emerging risks. The exclusion must be reexamined, questioned again, remembering the reality and not enclosing blood transfusion in a secure dynamic unsuited to the reality of the risk. Also, it appears capital to keep the debate in mind, far exceeding that of blood donation to involve more that a legitimate search for equality and justice in a society. The debate must take account of these elements of reality, without leave to fascinate at the risk of providing an unadjusted answer to the original problem. Ethics seems to invite us in these discussions as they show the axes of reflection or problematization channels. Far from closing the debate, it opens the latter to new areas and participates in the advance of ideas, thus constituting a main actor.