(CNN)TV host Andy Cohen said he’s disappointed that — even though he’s tested positive for “robust” Covid-19 antibodies — he isn’t allowed to potentially help coronavirus patients by donating plasma because he’s a gay man.
Cohen told “The View” on Tuesday that the roadblock is what he calls “antiquated and discriminatory guidelines by the FDA to prevent HIV.”
The FDA’s updated rules bar any man who has had sex with another man in the past three months from donating blood or plasma.
If there are enough antibodies in donated plasma, some doctors say, it can potentially kill Covid-19 in patients who have the disease. In April, the FDA said they are limiting the plasma treatments to those who are most seriously ill.
Cohen announced his positive Covid-19 diagnosis on Instagram in March, “after a few days of self-quarantine, and not feeling great.” About 11 days later, the Bravo executive returned to work on his radio show and shared his experience recovering from the virus at home.
He told Anderson Cooper in April that after recovering, he signed up for a program at Mount Sinai in New York because the hospital system put out notice of an urgent need for plasma from people who had overcome coronavirus.
“They said, ‘You can’t do it,'” Cohen told “The View.” “I was hurt. I just thought well this is crazy, technology has come so far.”
“They’re worried about HIV in blood,” he said. “But I’m HIV negative. And you can find that out, and then you can test my blood a couple of times before putting it into a system.”
The “Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen” host said he’s been speaking out for months to urge the FDA to reexamine the outdated rules.
“What a loss,” Cohen said on “The View.” “Here I have these robust antibodies, and I can’t share my plasma and possibly help anybody. Extreme disappointment.”