At it stands today, men in France who acknowledge, in a mandatory pre-donation interview, ever having sex with another man are automatically and permanently banned from giving blood.
The ban stems from a 1983 law based on statistics that showed there was a prevalence of the HIV virus among homosexuals and the fact that the virus is not always picked up if blood tests take place immediately after transmission.
“There is still this stereotypical image of all gay men having AIDS, which comes from the 1980s. People simply thought AIDS was a gay man’s disease and we are stuck with that view today.
He added: “Most gay couples are simply like any other heterosexual couples in terms of their sexual practices.”