NI: UK Supreme Court declines to revisit blood ban case

NI: UK Supreme Court declines to revisit blood ban case

The UK Supreme Court has declined to revisit a ruling on Northern Ireland’s lifetime ban on blood donation by men who have sex with men.

The High Court in Belfast had ruled in 2013 that the Health Minister’s decision not to alter the lifetime ban was irrational and infected with apparent bias. However, that judgment was subsequently overturned by the Court of Appeal in March.

This was then appealed to the Supreme Court - but by the time that the appeal was considered, the lifetime ban had been replaced with a one-year deferral by Health Minister Michelle O’Neill.

The Supreme Court has declined to hear the appeal and so the Court of Appeal judgment will stand

In its order, the Court said: “The Court ordered that permission to appeal be refused because the application does not raise an arguable point of law of general public importance which ought to be considered by the Supreme Court at this time bearing in mind that the case has already been the subject of judicial decision and reviewed on appeal. The matter is now academic.”

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