The UK government will compensate people who become seriously ill from treatment for a blood condition with the NHS national health service. These are victims of the ‘contaminated blood scandal’ that may have killed 2,400 people, reports Sky News.
Survivors and next of kin are eligible for compensation of £100,000. The British public broadcaster reports that more than 4,000 people are involved. The British government confirms the interim payments in a statement.
The infections took place in the 1970s and 1980s. Patients contracted HIV and hepatitis C from being given a contaminated drug. It was an imported drug in which the blood plasma of thousands of donors had been processed. Critics say some of those donors belonged to high-risk groups, such as drug users and detainees.
Activists have spent decades trying to get compensation. However, the decision to compensate victims with a sum of money was met with mixed reactions. Many patients have died, and not all surviving relatives are eligible for compensation. So, for the time being, this is only paid to survivors, widows, and widowers.
According to the BBC, payments will be made in October for eligible people in England. People in Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland will also receive compensation.
Victims and families are currently receiving financial support. But the compensation now decided is the first the government has agreed to compensate for lost wages, healthcare costs, and other losses.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Twitter that it is appalling that the families affected by the scandal have had to fight for so long to be heard. “Today, we finally start to right that injustice,” it sounded.