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Implementation of preventive measures against the transmission of the Ebola virus through human body products and parts

As an extension of its work since 2014 on Ebola virus disease (EVD), the French High Council for Public Health (HCSP) has integrated the preventive measures to be achieved against the transmission of the Ebola virus by products and parts of the human body (PHC).

The HCSP has taken into account data from the literature on the modes of transmission of the Ebola virus and its potential persistence in some tissues (central nervous system, male genital tract, eye), the recommendations of the ECDC in June 2019, the measures currently implemented in France by blood transfusion and transplant establishments, as well as the experience acquired by the National Reference Centre (CNR) for viral hemorrhagic fevers.

The HCSP recommends:

  • For people who have recovered from an EVD:
  • permanent deferral for blood and blood components donation;
  • permanent exclusion for organ, tissue and cell donations, with the exception of vital emergencies without alternative (heart and liver transplants and related stem cell donations) for which multidisciplinary consultation is required, informed consent from the recipient as well as consideration of the risk for health professionals, the recipient and his or her family;
  • a definitive exclusion for oocyte and sperm donations, in the context of medically assisted procreation (MAR), although case-by-case decisions remain possible;
  • a postponement of at least 6 weeks after recovery for oocyte retrieval in the context of fertility preservation;
  • a contraindication to sperm conservation, except in special cases (at least 2 years since the cure and verification of the absence of Ebola RNA by RT-PCR on two successive sperm samples).
  • For donors exposed to the Ebola virus and not infected:
  • a temporary deferral for the donation of blood and blood components of 4 months for malaria zones (reduced to 6 weeks if an outbreak was observed in a malaria-free zone);
  • a temporary deferral of 6 weeks for organ, tissue and cell donations, reduced to 4 weeks for vital organs (heart, liver), in case of a life-threatening emergency;
  • a postponement of at least 6 weeks for egg donation, intraconjugal sperm donation, MAR management and egg or sperm retrieval for fertility preservation.
  • For therapeutic breastfeeding, a definitive exclusion of women cured of or at risk of EVD.
  • For PCH donors vaccinated with the only live attenuated vaccine authorised in France, a deferral of donation for 4 weeks after vaccination.

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