Time to debunk
some myths

Put simply ... Héma-Québec, Canadian Blood Services and the Government of Canada see the world from two angles, the normal and the deviant.

The normal ones: heterosexuals Deviants: GBT2Q
Health profile Disease free HIV carriers
Their scientific vision Blood screening tests help to identify infected donors Current tests fail to ensure the safety of GBT2Q blood collection

No grey areas. No nuances. No more questions. WELL DONE!

But how did we get here?

With Our Blood

Sounding like
a broken record

For more than 20 years, the same two statistics have been hammered into Canadians’ minds:?
1

The frequency of infection is higher in the GBT2Q community than in heterosexuals and lesbians.

2

The prevalence of HIV is close to 15% among GBT2Q while it is 1% among heterosexual and lesbian populations.

Let’s rectify the situation!

Opposing GBT2Q to heterosexuals deflects from the real subject

All in all, almost 60% of new infections in 2018 were attributable to people outside of the GBT2Q community.?

In fact, since 2016 the rate of new infections among GBT2Q has fallen by over 11.1% (41.4% in 2018), and this trend continues.?

What you need to know is that in a year, 1 in 200 GBT2Q will contract HIV. As a percentage, that represents a risk of 0.5%!?

Let's look at it through a positive lens, it's 99.5% of people not at risk!

Instead of making a relative comparison of the rates, they should consider the absolute risk that is incredibly low.

Prevalence, not a good measurement tool for HIV

First, what is prevalence? “The ratio of the number of cases of a morbid disorder to the total size of a population, without distinction between new and old cases, at a given time or during a given period.”

In Canada, almost 4 in 5 people with HIV are under medical treatment. When treatment is successful, the HIV viral load is reduced (the amount of HIV in the blood) and it becomes impossible to transmit the virus. This is called U = U (undetectable equals untransmittable).?

Among Canadians with HIV currently on treatment, 91% are undetectable.?

So to talk about prevalence without talking about the specificity of HIV treatment is to hide the truth. Voilà, get the facts straight!

“With Our Blood does not see the exclusion of people living with HIV as an end. There are several studies underway internationally that attempt to clarify whether undetectable people should be eligible to donate blood.”

Ask, Identify,
Test

Changing things is quite simple even if we are told that it is complex ... If other countries such as Peru, Italy, France, and South Africa transformed their questionnaire into an egalitarian format, we should be able to in Canada too!

If the restriction is lifted, we are talking about an increase in donor potential of approximately 400,000 Canadians! What are we waiting for??

With Our Blood ©2021