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Year : 2018  |  Volume : 3  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 21-25

Paradigm shift of high-risk sexual behavior among indian blood donors: A threat to blood recipients

1 Department of Transfusion Medicine, Sri Balaji Action Medical Institute, New Delhi, India
2 Department of Transfusion Medicine, Santokba Durlabhji Memorial Hospital Cum Medical Research Institute, Jaipur, Rajasthan, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Sadhana Mangwana
Department of Transfusion Medicine, Sri Balaji Action Medical Institute, New Delhi
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/GJTM.GJTM_52_17

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Background: Despite the advances in screening of blood through nucleic acid testing to improve the blood safety, there are chances that blood will be donated during the “window period.” Careful selection of donors is an important and pragmatic risk management strategy to ensure blood safety. Subjects and Methods: The observational study was undertaken in two parts. In the first part, retrospective data of donors attending blood transfusion services of tertiary care center between 2014 and 2016 were collated and analyzed. In the second part, an online survey was conducted to assess the prevalence and awareness among donors. Results: A total of 32,773 donors reported for blood donation, of which 8974 (27.38%) potential donors were deferred. Deferral incidence due to high-risk behaviors increased in 3 years from 2.84% to 9.85% with majority of donors (99.60%) being males. Fifty-two percent of donors were repeat donors while 48% were first-time donors. In the survey, 90% of centers question donors about high-risk behaviors, 58% of centers specifically question about sex history. Fifty percent of seroreactive donors in the first part of the study and 63% of respondents found that donors give a positive history of high-risk behavior at the time of counseling. Discussion and Conclusion: In view of the need for optimization of cost of health-care services and maintaining highest level of transfusion safety, its time to devise new solutions in dealing with potentially risky sexual behaviors. Efforts are also needed to educate the general population to understand potential risks of high-risk behaviors and to promote the self-deferral or confidential unit exclusion.

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