Tainted blood scandal continues to cause controversy

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A man whose father was among the victims of the contaminated blood scandal has announced he intends to take a landmark legal battle to the courts.

Controversy still surrounds hospital’s handling of blood donations during the 1970s and 80s, which left thousands of Britons with infections including hepatitis and HIV.

The episode was subsequently dubbed the greatest treatment scandal in the history of the NHS, with questions raised as to why hospitals in England and Wales continued to import blood products from the United States – even after safety fears were raised.

Speaking to the press last month, Jason Evans revealed that his father, Jonathan, was being treated for haemophilia when he received blood tainted by HIV. He passed away when his son was just four-years-old.

Now aged 27, Mr Evans has said he plans to sue the Government for negligence and breach of statutory duty. If his case is successful it could set a precedent for other families caught up in the scandal.

The furore intensified last month after a BBC Panorama programme raised questions about the fact that many crucial documents, including medical records, weren’t available. This has prompted accusations of a cover-up.

Speaking to the BBC, Mr Evans said: “There are many of us who think that one of the reasons why you can’t get hold of a lot of these documents… was they cleaned them up because there was a sort of panic going around the world in the middle 80s, that these issues would reach court.”

The Department of Health has maintained that no documents had been destroyed maliciously and there was no evidence of missing or amended medical records.

It is important to seek expert legal advice if you believe you have the grounds to pursue a clinical negligence claim.  For guidance please contact our head of Dispute Resolution Stephen Silverman or visit our website.

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