Infected Blood Inquiry

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Inquiry into Contaminated Blood

The taintedblood Timeline  -  what really happened...

"To no one will we sell, to no one deny or delay, right or justice."
Magna Carta - 15th June, 1215

No of entries selected: 3 of 711
29 April
Dr David Owen - Self-Sufficiency - Intended Use of Half Million
In a DHSS memo entitled "UK Aims to be Self-Sufficient in Supply of Blood Products", the following is stated by Dr. David Owen:

"Following a special allocation of 500,000 last year substantial progress was now being made in building up production capacity in the NHS, and self-sufficiency in home-produced Factor VIII was expected to be reached in mid-1977." (paragraph 3)

Note: The half million, (intended for building up capacity within the NHS) was, in fact, NOT used for building-up production capacity for self-sufficiency and instead ended up being paid out to increase the amount of people donating blood in the UK.

Type: Recovered Document - DHSS Memo
Location: UK
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27 July
BPL Elstree / PF Laboratories - Inspection Failings
In a document entitled "Blood Products and Plasma Fractionation Laboratories" there is clear knowledge of the shortcomings of both BPL and the PF Laboratory in July 1976:

"PF Laboratory has been inspected. BPL will be visited in October." (page 7, paragraph 2, line 1)

"It is not unlikely that the accommodation of both laboratories will be criticised and, in certain respects, found inadequate. Both were designed before the Medicines Act was passed and therefore several years before those responsible for applying this Act had formulated the criteria to be met." (page 7, paragraph 3)

Note: It is quite disgusting that these failings at BPL Elstree coincide with the use of their factor VIII concentrates in trials involving children at the Treloar boarding school.

Type: Recovered Document - Collaborative Trials
Location: UK
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22 December
Dr Peter Jones / Dr David Owen - World in Action - Underfunding of BPL
The condition and lack of funding of BPL Elstree is discussed at length in ITV's World in Action in December 1980. The following comments are particularly worth noting:

Dr David Owen MP, then Minister of Health acknowledges that no government has put enough money in to BPL: "Well, I don't think we've invested enough. I thought then, on the best evidence that I had, I think it was 500,000 that we found, was going to be sufficient. But what has happened is that although we have increased, as I gather at production, demand increased as well. I left, ceased to be Minister of Health and went to the Foreign Office in 1976, but I think what has been needed is a steady investment, and not just into Blood Products Laboratory, but also into the regional blood transfusion services which have been starved of money." (page 2, paragraph 4)

Dr Peter Jones: "What should have been put in is something more in the region of 25 million..." (page 4, paragraph 2)

Reporter [with reference to hepatitis]: "Research has shown that haemophiliacs are TEN times more likely to contract the disease if they use commercial imports, rather than National Health Service material." (page 11, paragraph 6)

Reporter's Closing Comment: "The Department says there's no money available. That means hospitals will spend millions more on imports, patients will risk the consequences of skid row blood and Britain will become increasingly dependent on the world blood market." (page 16)

Source: (16 pages, 3.66MB)
Type: Recovered Document - Transcript of World in Action - ITV - 22 December, 1980
Location: UK
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Timeline Copyright ©2006 Andrew March & Haydn Lewis
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