United Kingdom: towards compensation for the victims of a scandal of contaminated blood

UK: Towards compensation for victims of tainted blood scandal ;


The leader of a public inquiry into a massive UK tainted blood scandal that claimed some 2,400 lives in the 1970s and 1980s has recommended that victims be given at least £100,000 in allowances each. 

Brian Langstaff, a retired judge who is presiding over this investigation, which opened in September 2018, advised the government that “an interim payment be made, without delay, to all infected persons and all bereaved partners (…) The amount does not must not be less than 100,000 British Pounds”, or approximately $155,000 Canadian.

Thousands of people with hemophilia had contracted hepatitis C and HIV after receiving blood transfusions from the United States United States, under the supervision of the NHS, the British public health service.

A representative of the victims, the lawyer Des Collins, welcomed these recommendations.

“While this comes too late for the thousands of people who have tragically died in the years following their infection, it is a welcome development for some of those who are still living with the terrible consequences of this preventable medical error,” he said. he said.

He added that he was now waiting for the government's response to these recommendations.

The decision to open a public inquiry to shed light on this tragedy was taken in 2017 by the UK government.

A previous inquiry concluded in 2009 found that the government should have acted sooner to increase UK blood supplies and end dependency on imports.

It led to the establishment of a system of compensation for victims, but no trial had been undertaken and responsibilities had not been established.

In September 2017, the Britain's High Court of Justice has allowed victims of the scandal to launch a class action for damages.