Government to reveal infected blood compensation scheme after 'decades of refusal'

The government will outline how it plans to compensate the victims and families of the infected blood scandal when it makes a statement in the Commons later today.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak apologised in parliament on Monday after the Infected Blood Inquiry published its final report into the scandal, blaming failures on "successive governments, the NHS, and blood services".

It will fall to Paymaster General John Glen to reveal what compensation package those impacted will now be entitled to.

But Mr Sunak told MPs there would be "comprehensive compensation to those infected and those affected", adding: "Whatever it costs to deliver this scheme, we will pay it."

Since the 1970s, 30,000 people were infected with either HIV or Hepatitis through contaminated blood products and transfusions. Around 3,000 have since died.

Inquiry chair Sir Brian Langstaff said "those in authority did not put patient safety first" and the response of the government and NHS "compounded" victims' suffering, with a "pervasive cover-up" and the "downright deception" of those impacted.

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One of the main recommendations of his report was for an immediate compensation scheme after "a refusal for decades", saying: "Now is the time for national recognition of this disaster and for proper compensation to all who have been wronged."

Successive governments have been blamed for failing to take responsibility for the scandal, and the current government has been accused of trying to delay compensation to victims after an inquiry was first set up by Theresa May in 2017.

But ministers accepted the need for payments ahead of the final report being published.

It is now estimated that the compensation bill could exceed £10bn.