Scottish Report Expected to Call for Compensation For Those Infected With Hepatitis C Through Contaminated Blood
The Scottish Parliament's health committee is expected to publish a report on Monday saying that the government has a "moral duty" to provide compensation for those infected with hepatitis C through contaminated blood products in the 1980s, BBC News reports. An estimated 300 Scots contracted the virus through blood transfusions before the National Health Service instituted blood screening procedures in the early 1990s. The Scottish Executive had said there was "no negligence" on the part of the government and "refused" to offer compensation. But last year the English High Court ruled that the British government must compensate 114 people in England who contracted the disease through contaminated blood, "pav[ing] the way" for the Scottish reversal. Scottish Health Minister Susan Deacon has ordered NHS lawyers to begin negotiating settlements with those who contracted the disease from transfusions after March 1988 and sought legal compensation under the Consumer Protection Act. The parliamentary report is expected to "go further" by recommending blanket "no-fault" compensation for all those infected by tainted blood products. The recommendations are similar to the compensatory measures suggested for hemophiliacs who contracted HIV through tainted blood products (BBC News, 10/2).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.