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News on Health 4 ArdorComm Media Group Britain’s Health Service Accused of Cover-Up in Infected Blood Scandal
News on Health 4 ArdorComm Media Group Britain’s Health Service Accused of Cover-Up in Infected Blood Scandal

Britain’s Health Service Accused of Cover-Up in Infected Blood Scandal

-By ArdorComm News Network

Britain’s National Health Service (NHS) has been accused of a cover-up in a decades-old infected blood scandal, according to a damning public inquiry report submitted to the government on Monday. The scandal, dating back to the 1970s, involved over 30,000 people being infected with life-threatening viruses such as HIV and Hepatitis C while under NHS care.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak is expected to issue an apology on behalf of the government after inquiry chair Sir Brian Langstaff delivered his scathing verdict. The report highlights the importation of infected batches of Factor VIII, a crucial blood-clotting protein, from the US, which led to widespread infection. Donated blood was not tested for HIV/AIDS until 1986 and Hepatitis C until 1991 in the UK.

“The scale of what happened is horrifying,” Langstaff stated in his report, which followed a five-year investigation. “More than 3,000 deaths are attributable to infected blood, blood products, and tissue.” He added that the response from the NHS and the government amounted to a cover-up, not through an orchestrated conspiracy but through pervasive and subtle efforts to hide the truth to save face and expense.

The extensive 2,527-page, seven-volume document details the scandal’s enormous scale and includes recommendations such as a speedy compensation scheme for those affected and who lost loved ones. It also urges the NHS to ensure that anyone who received a blood transfusion before 1996 is urgently tested for Hepatitis C and that new patients are asked if they had a transfusion before that time.

The report criticizes the response under Margaret Thatcher’s Conservative Party government, which claimed that patients received the best treatment available at the time. Langstaff called this assertion inappropriate and unacceptable, noting that it became a mantra that was never questioned.

An apology, the report adds, should be sincere and lead to action, including compensation. The Sunak-led government has promised to address the issue of final compensation once the inquiry’s report is published, with the total cost likely to run into billions of pounds.

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