The Trust has welcomed the announcement today by the Prime Minister that the government will increase the financial support for those infected and affected by the infected blood scandal ahead of the start of the public hearings today. Thousands of people were infected with Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C and HIV following blood transfusions.
Vanessa Hebditch, Director of Communications said, “The people affected by this tragedy deserve not only to know the truth about exactly what happened and the degree of negligence that occurred but also to be adequately compensated.”
Regular annual payments for “some” of those infected will increase from a total of £46 million to £75 million.
The Prime Minister said: “The contaminated blood scandal was a tragedy that should never have happened and has caused unimaginable pain and hurt for victims and their families for decades. The start of the inquiry today is a significant moment for those who have suffered so much for so long, as well as for those who campaigned and fought so hard to make it happen. I know this will be a difficult time for victims and their families ‒ but today will begin a journey which will be dedicated to getting to the truth of what happened and in delivering justice to everyone involved.
I am pleased that today we are also confirming increased financial support for beneficiaries of the infected blood support scheme in England, from £46 million to £75 million, and making changes so more bereaved beneficiaries will be eligible for additional support. We have made these changes in response to those who asked us to look again at the support we give to those affected, and as Prime Minister I am determined that the government will continue to listen and to co-operate fully with the Inquiry.”
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Health and Social Care Jackie Doyle-Price MP said: “We’ve always been clear that all those who have been affected by this tragedy should be supported by a fair and transparent support scheme that focuses on their welfare and long-term independence. We have continued to follow the Infected Blood Inquiry closely and have considered the issues raised at the initial hearings, and now we are demonstrating that we have listened by committing up to a further £30 million to the scheme. We have also listened to the call for parity of support across the UK and we are planning to start discussions with our counterparts in the devolved administrations to see how this could be achieved.”