‘My family was destroyed’: Relatives of blood scandal victims get nothing | Tainted Blood Scandal

With the news that thousands of parents and children of victims of the blood scandal are not receiving anything in interim payments from the government, we are looking at some of the cases.

Tony Farrugia, 50

Barry Farrugia who died in 1986 after contracting HIV and hepatitis C from contaminated blood products
Barry Farrugia died in 1986 after contracting HIV and hepatitis C from contaminated blood products

Tony Farrugia, whose father, Barry, died of HIV and hepatitis C in 1986 after being treated for haemophilia with tainted blood products, is one of thousands of family members still waiting for a compensation.

“This announcement is another slap in the face because, although they recognize some families, they do not recognize others who have suffered the same fate. It is the cheapest option. There are at least 2,000 families who are completely excluded – the government has just whitewashed us. The message to children and parents is that we don’t matter.

Farrugia, who now lives in St Neots, was cared for as a child and separated from her brothers when her father suffered from HIV-related dementia before his death. “My family was destroyed by this. I didn’t see my twin brother again until I was 18, I didn’t see my other three brothers again until 2010. It’s almost like we’re watered down as a family, so we can’t talk .

In March, a study by Sir Robert Francis recommended that the government put in place a comprehensive compensation framework for victims and their families. Farrugia said: “It is time for the government to implement this report in full. Failure to act on all the recommendations is to deprive the victims of justice.

Executive Emma, ​​49

Emma Frame and her father Jeffrey who died in 1991 of HIV and hepatitis C after receiving contaminated blood products
Emma Frame and her father, Jeffrey, died in 1991 of HIV and Hepatitis C after receiving contaminated blood products.

Emma Frame, from Newcastle, was 18 when she lost her father, Jeffrey, to HIV and Hepatitis C. She said: ‘It is vital that interim payments are made to those infected as soon as possible who are still suffering.

But she added: ‘The government is trying to make it look good, but none of it is good. All relevant people should be included in the program. It’s not about the money. I’m fighting for someone to admit that my dad should still be here.

“I was 11 when I was told my father had a disease that no one wanted to talk about, when leaflets came through the doors telling us how horrible it was going to be. It was horrible. I suffered from mental health issues my whole life. And it affects generations – my son Charlie is angry that he can only see his grandfather in pictures.

She added: ‘The government needs to admit this was preventable and compensate people for the lives they stole from them.’

Rosemary Calder, 74

Rosemary Calder and her son Nicholas, who died of HIV in 1999 after being treated with contaminated blood products
Rosemary Calder and her son Nicholas, who died of HIV in 1999 after being treated with contaminated blood products.

Rosemary Calder, from Northamptonshire, fears she may never receive compensation for the death of her son Nicholas in 1999 after being infected with HIV.

Calder, who runs a support group for parents bereaved in the scandal, said: “I’d like to think we’ll get compensation, but none of us are getting any younger.

“There is a lot of anxiety and stress in parents who are constantly neglected. I missed Nicky being part of my life. I missed his love and his company. No money can buy that. But paying compensation is the only way for the government to show any contrition. »

She said Nicholas’ death had a “massive impact” on her family. This has led to the breakdown of her marriage, while her other son is still receiving counseling for survivor’s guilt and her daughter cannot talk about Nicholas without crying.

Jason Evans, 32

Jason Evans, whose father died after receiving tainted blood
Jason Evans, whose father died after receiving tainted blood.

Jason Evans, whose father, Jonathan, died in 1993 after receiving an unprocessed blood product known as Factor VIII, is the co-founder of the campaign group Factor 8. He is also the lead plaintiff in a case before the High Court seeking compensation, which is pending until the conclusion of the inquest.

He said: “Many of us are concerned that the government is dragging its feet on a more extensive compensation scheme. Some welcome the money, but others are downright embarrassed by it. This creates a division that will only get worse if half of the bereaved families do not receive help.

Figures Evans obtained in a freedom of information request showed that of the 1,243 haemophiliacs who contracted HIV in England following the scandal, only 229 survivors are currently receiving help. They show that 228 bereaved partners are supported but 798 families of those who died of HIV through tainted blood received no support.

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