Why were blood tests required in San Francisco before 1995?

Blood tests were required for marriages in the state of California in order to check whether either of the parents had a disease which could be passed on to a child. State laws requiring blood tests began to emerge in the 1930s, before penicillin and was a commonly used method to prevent disease. The most commonly checked for disease was syphilis, however HIV, Rubella and Sickle-Cell Anemia can also be detected with a blood test. There are several states which still recognize the archaic law and require a blood test prior to authorizing a marriage.  

 

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