More victims of the contaminated blood scandal to give evidence as inquiry resumes
The Infected Blood Inquiry resumes this week in London to hear evidence from more people affected by the scandal.
Posted on 07 October 2019
The inquiry will resume on Tuesday 8 October and hearings will be held on 8-11 October, 15-18 October and 28 October to 1 November at Fleetbank House, Salisbury Square, London.
Leigh Day is representing over 300 people as core participants in the inquiry who have been affected by the contaminated blood, both those given the blood through routine transfusion such as following an accident, complications during childbirth or routine dental treatment and blood products given to haemophiliacs.
In to 1970s, 80s and early 90s thousands of NHS patients were provided with the contaminated blood and/or blood products by the NHS, some of which was imported from abroad. Those infected by the contaminated blood and/or blood products contracted one or both of the blood-borne viruses, Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) and Hepatitis C Virus (HCV).
The Infected Blood Inquiry was announced by then Prime Minister Theresa May in July 2017 and the public hearings commenced in London in September 2018. Further public hearings where those affected have been able to give evidence have been heard around the country in Leeds, Cardiff, Edinburgh and Belfast.
The hearings beginning tomorrow will hear evidence from those who have been infected by the contaminated blood and the loved ones of those infected who have since died, including nine Leigh Day clients.
Since the inquiry began harrowing stories have been told about the stigma suffered by those infected by HIV and HCV, the devastating effects of infection on both physical and mental health, and the desperate search for answers and accountability from those infected and affected.
Emma Jones, partner in the Leigh Day Human Rights department, has been representing victims of the contaminated blood scandal for over three years. Emma has supported them in relation to the inquiry, including assisting with obtaining medical records, taking statements and assistance with EIBSS applications. Emma is also representing around 320 individuals in an Equality Act claim in relation to allegedly are discriminatory discretionary payments.
Emma Jones, solicitor from Leigh Day representing over 300 core participants said:
“Those affected by the contaminated blood scandal waited years from a thorough, independent inquiry and so far my clients have been pleased that those affected have had their voices heard. The general public has been quite rightly shocked by many of the stories that have been told to the inquiry. We hope that the government has been listening to the devastating impact this scandal has had on thousands of people and will work with the inquiry to ensure that those involved in the scandal are held accountable and that those affected by the scandal are given appropriate and adequate support.”
Anyone who has been affected by the contaminated blood scandal who would like more information about Leigh Day’s work regarding the Infected Blood Inquiry can contact contaminatedBlood@leighday.co.uk or call 020 7650 1200.
Leigh Day is also bringing a separate group claim against the government for compensation for those infected and affected, led by partner Gene Matthews.