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Whether you’re having trouble with your account, or would like to make a suggestion, Canadian Blood Services offers you quick and convenient options to troubleshoot or get in touch. Contact us via live chat, consult our FAQ, send an email, or give us a call at 1 888 2 DONATE (1-888-236-6283).

Men Who Have Sex with Men

Eligibility criteria

As of Aug. 15, 2016, men who have sex with men are eligible to donate blood if they have not had sexual contact with a man for at least one year. Read more.

History and timeline

In June 2016, Health Canada approved Canadian Blood Services’ proposal to reduce the blood donation ineligibility period for men who have sex with men from five years to one year.

In 2013, the ineligibility period was reduced to five years. Before that, men who had sexual contact with another man even once since 1977 were ineligible to give blood. Moving to five years was a prudent first step in updating Canada’s donor eligibility criteria for MSM. Before making another submission to Health Canada, a minimum of two years of data was required to support further changing the deferral period.

Facilitating Blood Research      Key Facts

Latest news

Research projects - funding awarded

Canadian Blood Services, in partnership with Héma-Québec and with funding from Health Canada, is supporting 11 research projects investigating various aspects of blood and plasma donors’ eligibility criteria and screening process. The goal of this unique research funding program is to generate adequate evidence to inform alternative screening approaches for blood and plasma donors, which could evolve the current eligibility criteria for men who have sex with men. 

Our funded research projects 

Research meeting

A two-day meeting was held in January 2017 with national and international stakeholders to identify research priorities for closing knowledge gaps that impact donor eligibility for men who have sex with men. Read more 

The MSM Research Grant Program launched Feb. 1, 2017. 

Eligibility change notice - changes to blood donor guidelines

Health Canada has approved Canadian Blood Services’ request to reduce the blood donation waiting period for men who have sex with men from five years to one year. The change took effect across the country on Aug. 15, 2016. Canadian Blood Services and Héma-Québec, Québec’s blood operator, made the change at the same time. Read more.