Continuing Education Episode!
Continuing Education!

Keeping blood donors and patients who will receive their blood safe from harm is a massive responsibility. Dr. Mindy Goldman describes tough decisions made in Canada in recent years.

Mindy Goldman Image

Dr. Mindy Goldman

Those who oversee blood collection organizations wrestle constantly with two questions: “How can I keep my blood donors safe?” and “How can I keep the recipients of the blood we are collecting safe?” These twin responsibilities shape decisions and policies in blood donor centers worldwide.

Tough Choices

Dr. Mindy Goldman, Medical Director at Canadian Blood Services (CBS), is deeply involved in the evaluation of those core questions. As a result, I wanted her to describe Canada’s decisions on two big issues: First, whether to impose an upper age limit on blood donors, and second, how long to defer men from blood donation who have had intimate contact with other men.

A Quick But Important Word

Some statements in this interview, especially those regarding the discussions about deferrals for males who have had sexual contact with other males (MSM) will inevitably be viewed differently by those who view all such deferrals as discriminatory and by those who find them appropriate. This interview discusses the rationale of why Dr. Goldman and CBS chose to reduce the deferral period to 3 months (the current US deferral for MSM, at this writing, is 12 months). While this is a highly charged issue regardless of your personal views, this interview should not be interpreted as anything but educational. I welcome your respectful discussion of this interview in the comments below.

Mindy Goldman Image

Dr. Mindy Goldman

Those who oversee blood collection organizations wrestle constantly with two questions: “How can I keep my blood donors safe?” and “How can I keep the recipients of the blood we are collecting safe?” These twin responsibilities shape decisions and policies in blood donor centers worldwide.

Tough Choices

Dr. Mindy Goldman, Medical Director at Canadian Blood Services (CBS), is deeply involved in the evaluation of those core questions. As a result, I wanted her to describe Canada’s decisions on two big issues: First, whether to impose an upper age limit on blood donors, and second, how long to defer men from blood donation who have had intimate contact with other men.

A Quick But Important Word

Some statements in this interview, especially those regarding the discussions about deferrals for males who have had sexual contact with other males (MSM) will inevitably be viewed differently by those who view all such deferrals as discriminatory and by those who find them appropriate. This interview discusses the rationale of why Dr. Goldman and CBS chose to reduce the deferral period to 3 months (the current US deferral for MSM, at this writing, is 12 months). While this is a highly charged issue regardless of your personal views, this interview should not be interpreted as anything but educational. I welcome your respectful discussion of this interview in the comments below.

About My Guest:

Mindy Goldman, MD is the Medical Director, Donor and Clinical Services at Canadian Blood Services, Ottawa, Canada, and an adjunct professor at the University of Ottawa. She is a clinical hematologist with extra training in Transfusion Medicine.

Over her career, Dr. Goldman has focused on evaluation and implementation of donor eligibility policies to ensure safety for both patients and donors. Her areas of interest for donor safety include development of common international definitions for donor reactions, assessment of the upper age limit for donation, and mitigation strategies for prevention of vasovagal reactions and iron depletion in donors. On the other hand, her main focus of interest for recipient safety has been evaluation and evolution of deferral policies for men who have sex with men.

Mindy is currently on the Board of Directors of the ISBT, and is active in many international professional societies, including AABB and the BEST collaborative. She is a frequent contributor to the medical literature and with Dr. Anne Eder, a co-editor of the 2019 AABB Press publication “Screening Blood Donors with the Donor History Questionnaire.”

FREE Continuing Education!

This podcast episode offers a FREE continuing education activity where you can earn the following types of credit: 1 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM, 1 ASCLS P.A.C.E.® Contact Hour (including Florida Clinical Laboratory Credit), and American Board of Pathology Self-Assessment Modules (SAMs) for Continuing Certification (CC, formerly MOC).

To receive credit and review the accreditation information and related disclosures, please visit Transfusion News Continuing Education on Wiley Health Learning.

DISCLAIMER: The opinions expressed on this episode are those of my guest and I alone, and do not reflect those of the organizations with which either of us is affiliated. Neither Dr. Goldman nor I have any relevant financial disclosures.

Thanks to:

Music Credit

Music for this episode includes “Cuando te invade el temor” and “Reflejo,” both by Mar Virtual via the Free Music Archive. Click the image below for permissions and license details.
Creative Commons license and link

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