On the 30th June, the Chairs of three UK Haemophilia Societies had written a joint letter to the Prime Minister on behalf of infected and affected members, asking for immediate action to accept the compensation recommendations made by Sir Brian Langstaff in his second interim report.
The full letter can be read here.
The letter highlighted the months of delays since the report was published and emphasised the damage that further uncertainty and lack of progress causes. It was hoped that last month’s Parliamentary debate would provide more insight on the Government’s timescales, but ultimately failed to provide any substantial information on progress made.
It was also hoped that this appeal will highlight to the Prime Minister the need for urgency and positive leadership in this matter.
On this day, August 15th, we have received a letter from Jeremy Quin, responding on behalf of the Prime Minister. Regrettably, the content of this letter falls short of adequately addressing the very serious situation currently being faced by those who have been affected by contaminated blood.
The PM appeared before the Infected Blood Inquiry on July 26th and was advised by the Inquiry Chair Sir Brian Langstaff that:-
“I could not countenance there being any further delay on my part before the recommendations which I was making would be put into effect. I said that I thought there was no reason, given political will, why they could not be put into effect this year. You will realise that to every one here I think you — it is one of the unfortunate aspects of being Prime Minister — you embody political will. AND they will take away I think from the evidence you have given the reassurances that you have said in terms: of course we will put it right; of course it is the case we are committed to compensation to those infected and affected.
You have agreed that it is one of your priorities. It is a priority — and that word is a word of considerable importance, not everything can be a priority. And you have endorsed Penny Mordaunt’s wish to have it sorted “on our shift”, your Government’s shift. You will take away, I hope, the need for many to see tangible reassurance of that”
Sir Brian Langstaff July 26th 2023
That reassurance is clearly not forthcoming from the attached response made on the Prime Minister’s behalf.
We are now consulting with our colleagues the content for a further letter to the PM and would welcome any members thoughts.