Rugby MP welcomes contaminated blood inquiry

Rugby MP Mark Pawsey in the House of Commons NNL-170702-114528001
Rugby MP Mark Pawsey in the House of Commons NNL-170702-114528001

Rugby MP Mark Pawsey welcomed the government’s announcement of an inquiry into the contaminated blood scandal as a constituent is among those affected.

More than 2,400 people with haemophilia have died as a result of contaminated blood transfusions administered during the 1970s and 80s, with tens of thousands of others contracting diseases such as hepatitis C and HIV.

Following years of campaigning, especially by campaign group Tainted Blood, the government announced a full independent public inquiry will look into the scandal.

During the emergency debate after the announcement, Mr Pawsey called for the inquiry to consider the challenges faced by people affected by contaminated blood who want children after this issue was raised by one of his constituents.

Speaking afterwards, he said: “The issue of contaminated blood was first brought to my attention by a local resident whose life has been deeply affected by a transfusion of contaminated blood.

“My constituent was trying to have a child through IVF and the couple were entitled to one round of IVF through the normal procedures, but they applied for a second round.

“Despite the fact that their fertility was affected by contaminated blood, they were denied a second round of IVF and had to spend £8,000 of their family money in order to conceive a second child.”

Mark said the government has done the right thing by calling an inquiry into the ‘terrible tragedy’ but it should look into what more could be done for the victims and their families.

“I hope that the inquiry will consider the wider issues that this tragedy raises, including the challenges faced by those like my constituent,” he said.

“The government has already done much to help those with contaminated blood, with an additional £125m committed last July.

“This has taken the total provided in financial support to over £390m but it is clear from the stories that I and many of my colleagues have heard that more needs to be done.”