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PM urged to pay 'tainted blood' victims compensation now

Patients were given infected blood products on the NHS in the 70s and 80s Photo: Press Association

A victim of the 'tainted blood' scandal has welcomed calls for the Government to pay compensation immediately.

The leaders of seven political parties have signed a letter to Theresa May demanding full payments for those infected in the NHS Infected Blood scandal.

Melanie McKay from Sheffield was one of the thousands of people infected with HIV or Hepatitis from NHS blood supplies in the 1970s and 80s.

She says compensation payments to victims are long overdue.

Melanie McKay from Sheffield Credit: ITV Calendar

An inquiry is currently underway, chaired by Sir Brian Langstaff, but the findings are unlikely to be published for two years.

Now the leaders of seven opposition parties consisting of Labour, SNP, Lib-Dems, DUP, Plaid Cymru, Green Party, and Change UK, are demanding compensation is paid now.

The letter to Theresa May was co-ordinated by Diana Johnson, Labour MP for Hull North and Co-Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Haemophilia and Contaminated Blood.

She says over 2,500 victims have already died and one more is dying every four days, and many will not live to see if compensation is paid when the Inquiry concludes.

Diana Johnson MP - Hull North Credit: ITV Calendar

We have already heard enough harrowing testimonies at the Public Inquiry to know the damage to individuals and families caused by the state.

"Those infected and affected, throughout the United Kingdom, should not be made to wait for full compensation any longer just because the current Public Inquiry is happening so much later than it should have."

– Diana Johnson MP - Hull North
The tainted blood was infected with Hepatitis C and HIV Credit: Press Association

We’ve always been clear that all those who have been affected by this tragedy should be supported by a fair and transparent support scheme that focuses on their welfare and long-term independence.

“We have continued to follow the Infected Blood Inquiry closely and have demonstrated we are listening by committing up to a further £30 million to the scheme.

“We have also listened to the call for parity of support across the UK and we are planning to start discussions with our counterparts in the devolved administrations to see how this could be achieved.”

– Department of Health and Social Care spokesperson