A father of two from Penarth – who was amongst thousands of patients given a transfusion of contaminated blood in the early 1980s – has said he welcomes the new public inquiry which is to be held into the scandal.
Some 30 years ago, Mr David Thomas had been treated in hospital for a nose-bleed which lasted three weeks. During treatment, medical staff administered a transfusion of blood containing plasma which, it turns out, was contaminated with Hepatitis C .
In 2009 doctors discovered that Mr Thomas’s liver had been severely affected by cirrhosis but fortunately they diagnosed the condition just in time and Mr Thomas has now told Media Wales that he is now free of the blood-borne infection after taking a new oral treatment.
Mr Thomas was lucky, but has told WalesonLine that the news of the inquiry – announced today by Prime Minister Theresa May – is, for him, “tinged with sadness“. Contaminated blood tranfusions have killed at least 2,400 people including 70 in Wales.
MPs have been granted a debate on the issue following a request from Labour MP Diana Johnson. She says ministers had failed to consider evidence of criminal activity and described the scandal as “the worst treatment disaster in the history of the NHS”.
Stephen Doughty the Labour MP for Cardiff South and Penarth – who has also spoken in the debate – has paid tribute to Ms Johnson saying she had worked “doggedly” to get the public inquiry set up.
Details of the UK-wide investigation have yet to be finalised but the Prime Minister has described the scandal as an “appalling injustice” and a tragedy that has caused immeasurable hardship and pain for all those affected.