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Haemophiliac wins compensation legal challenge

Susan Watts | 18:19 UK time, Friday, 16 April 2010

An award-winning composer who contracted HIV and Hepatitis C through NHS treatment with contaminated blood products today won his legal challenge over compensation payments.

Haemophiliac Andrew March, 36, had sought a judicial review quashing the Health Secretary's May 2009 decision not to implement fully the recommendations of the Archer Report on supplies which were not adequately cleansed before use.

Read how I've covered Mr March and other haemophiliacs' cases here.


  • Comment number 1.


    I have the feeling there have been a range of errors affecting health and wellbeing (pensions) and in all of them government waits while many of those deserving compensation/assistance DIE.

    Might Westminster be a blood relation of the Vatican?

  • Comment number 2.

    Compo is a bit of a minefield most of the time, but is clear that people who have suffered and now incur costs as a consequence are most deserving.

    Of course, coverage then tends to ignore where the money so awarded comes from.

    But mostly I maintain an interest, seldom satisfied, on where the responsibilities and accountability leads to any who may not have done their job very well.

    In a 'no reward for failure' sense.

  • Comment number 3.


    How about a piece on the science behind grounding the aircraft.

    I am sure this has happened many times before without such a reaction, usually a simple exclusion zone is enforced for the duration of the eruption.

    apart from that one example where all 4 engines stopped (as i recall it pretty much flew straight over the top of the volcano) how real is this problem?

    How many problems have been caused before in aircraft flying more than 500 miles away from any erupting volcano?

    I suspect the answer is NONE.

  • Comment number 4.

    if Obama wanted to get in to see Brown...I bet he could....'cos he can...gedditt

  • Comment number 5.

    Andrew March - Judicial Review - Justice Holman

    The Department of Health have a nasty skeleton in their cupboard that they just wish would go away. They never wanted a public enquiry or for that matter any enquiry. They did not co-operate with Lord Archer and all they did was release thousand of documents under the freedom of information act many of which were too late to be considered and we are talking van loads.

    The Government did not have to respond to the Archer Enquiry but they did and a Junior Health Minister Gillian Merron was given the job of releasing their response which as Justice Holman has said 'is and remains
    infected by an error'. Therefore we must assume that she was wrongly briefed by the DOH which is not satisfacory as I assume she is an intelligent person. Lord Morris backed by the UK & Irish Haemophilia Societies told G Merron that she was wrong but they would not have any of it and it has taken this Judicial Review and the determination of Mr March to prove the Government wrong. He has been commended by Justice Holman.

    Many of the haemophiliacs who have survived are living with AIDS & Hepatitis C and are ill and desperately short of money. They are dependant on state benefits and are living on the poverty line. Although small ex gratia payments are paid in respect of AIDS I must remind them that apart from one small ex gratia payment from the Skipton fund that those with Hepatitis C have been conveniently forgotten about. To make matters worse most who were born before 1970 have enormous mobility problems and require knee, ankle & hip replacements but to the number of bleeds and arthropathy which is like bad arthritis. Now they beleive many are also infected with vCJD as well.

    The NHS infected this small group of people en mass due to bad blood collections in the American Prisons. I recall mention at the Archer Enqiry of one man in the early 80's whose job it was to sharpen the needles with sandpaper ready for the next donor. Trusty prisoners encouraged in mates to donate blood even if they were ill and bright yellow with hepatitis so is it any wonder that so many haemophiliacs were infected and died.

    Please Messrs Brown,Cameron & Clegg van you show some humility and bring this disgrace to an end.

    David Henderson

  • Comment number 6.

    Thank you Susan for covering this issue. Maybe after the successful judicial review last Friday the govt will finally tackle this matter in a serious manner and no longer insult the affected haemophiliac community. They may of course come back with the same decision; that they won't fully implement the findings of the Archer report, but in that case they have to come up with a damned good reason this time.

  • Comment number 7.

    Thank you Susan, for your loyal coverage over the years of this horrific NHS disaster, - nice to see you at the JR BTW :) - I'm been working on a 'media/video' collection in conjunction with Sue, Carol & AndrewM @ TB, to get our plight and case further supported and understood. We need as much material as possible, especially earlier footage from the late 70's & 80's (when the bad descisions were made) - I don't know if your able to help at all, it would be wonderful if you knew of any sources. You can see what we have up to now here : - you can also send me a message from there. Very many thanks, Richard


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