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Magna Carta - 15th June, 1215

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17 March
Lord Morris of Manchester on Crown Immunity and BPL
On Tuesday 17th March 2009, Lord Morris of Manchester made important reference to Crown Immunity and BPL (raised in the Archer report) during the Committee Stage debate of Amendment 133 of the Health Bill:


Lord Morris of Manchester: "The other issue to which I must finally refer is that of Crown immunity, on which the Archer report raises in commenting on behaviour of the Blood Products Laboratory (BPL). The report says:

In July 1979, the Medicines Inspectorate visited BPL. They reported that the buildings were never designed for the scale of production envisaged. They commented: "If this were a commercial operation we would have no hesitation in recommending that manufacture should cease until the facility was upgraded to a minimum acceptable level.".

"...The report then says: "BPL was rescued by Crown Immunity", and goes on to say that, "the existing plant continued production, relying on Crown Immunity to dispense with all the requirements of the Medicines Act, but was able to meet only about 40 per cent of the national requirements".

Lord Morris of Manchester: "Surely, words have lost their meaning if this does not mean that by the use of Crown immunity, a relic of feudal England, the lives of countless haemophilia patients were blatantly and gravely put at risk."

"...There could be no clearer text for describing the enormity of the use by the BPL of Crown immunity to dispense with all the requirements of that renowned and vital statute. I beg to move."

Type: Lords Hansard
Location: UK
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19 Janaury
Lord Morris of Manchester - Role of Crown Immunity in Protecting BPL
In Lords Hansard of 19th January, 2010, unstinting supporter and advocate for the plight of persons with haemophilia, Lord Morris of Manchester, asked Baroness Thornton what part Crown Immunity played in protecting BPL from legal proceedings:

Lord Morris of Manchester:

To ask Her Majesty's Government what part Crown Immunity played in protecting the Blood Products Laboratory from legal proceedings for failing to comply with the Medicines Act 1968 to the hurt of haemophilia patients treated with contaminated NHS blood and blood products. [HL1134]
Baroness Thornton:
Crown Immunity gave no protection from civil legal proceedings. Some affected individuals who had acquired HIV infection through their treatment with blood products did bring a civil action in 1990, which was settled out of court.
Source: Link #1
Type: Lords Hansard
Location: UK
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