WILLOTT WELCOMES TAINTED BLOOD REVIEW

January 10, 2011 7:24 PM

Jenny Willott, the Liberal Democrat MP for Cardiff Central, today welcomed the results of a Government review into the contaminated blood scandal.

Ms Willott, has been a vocal campaigner for justice for victims of the scandal, which saw thousands of people contract Hepatitis C and HIV as a result of being given contaminated blood by the NHS.

Announcing the results of the review, Health Secretary Andrew Lansley MP confirmed that payments to people who contacted Hepatitis C as a result of being given contaminated blood products would be significantly increased.

There will be a doubling in the one-off payments made to people who suffer the worst effects of Hepatitis C, annual payments to Hepatitis C victims in line with payments already made to those who contracted HIV.

Commenting Ms Willott said:

"The results of today's review are a significant step forward for victims of the contaminated blood scandal and their families. It has taken over 20 years to get this far and too many victims have already died without seeing justice.

"I am particularly saddened that Haydn Lewis and his brother Gareth both passed away in 2010 before they could see the results of their long campaign.

"I very much welcome the package being put in place and I hope that all payments are made as quickly as possible to victims and their families.

"However, I think that one of the most important aspects of today's announcement was the apology given by the Secretary of State for Health. No amount of money will ever make up for this tragedy but campaigners have waited far too long for the Government truly to apologise."

However, Ms Willott also expressed concern that the new payments currently only apply in England.

For payments to be made to those living in Wales, the Welsh Assembly Government will have to provide additional funding.

Jenny has written to Welsh Health Minister, Edwina Hart AM, urging her to make the finances available as soon as possible.

Jenny said:

"It is vital that the Welsh Assembly Government finds this money. Welsh victims must not be treated worse than those victims who live in England."

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