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    Death in the blood: The most shocking scandal in NHS history

    enSeptember 20, 2023

    Podcast Summary

    • Companies offer relief during inflation, from wireless to healthcareMint Mobile lowers wireless plan price to $15/month, PlushCare offers online doctor consultations for weight loss prescriptions, and the UK government faces scrutiny over past infected blood crisis response

      During times of inflation, companies like Mint Mobile aim to provide relief by lowering their prices. Mint Mobile recently brought in a reverse auctioneer to help set the price of their Unlimited Premium Wireless plan at an unprecedentedly low $15 a month. Meanwhile, in healthcare, PlushCare offers a solution for those seeking to lose weight with online access to board certified physicians who can prescribe FDA approved medications. Looking back at the past, former health secretary Kenneth Harry Clark maintains that the government acted efficiently regarding the risks posed by infected blood and blood products, despite the tragic outcome that left thousands dead. The infected blood crisis, which began in the 1970s, remains a shocking scandal in NHS history, and a public inquiry is underway to publish its final report this autumn. For journalist Caroline Wheeler, this story hits close to home as she has followed it since the beginning of her career.

    • Thousands of Hemophiliacs Infected with HIV and Hepatitis C from Contaminated Blood Products in the UK during the Late 1970s and 1980sDuring the late 1970s and 1980s in the UK, thousands of hemophiliacs were unknowingly infected with HIV and hepatitis C through contaminated blood products, leading to an estimated 5,000 affected individuals and over half passing away.

      During the late 1970s and 1980s in the UK, thousands of people, primarily hemophiliacs, were unknowingly infected with HIV and hepatitis C through contaminated blood products. One of these affected individuals was a 34-year-old man named Mick Mason, who contacted a young journalist during his first days on the job with a horrifying story. At first, the journalist was skeptical, but every detail of Mick's story checked out. Mick, a hemophiliac, had been infected with HIV at 18 and later discovered his infection when he received a diet sheet from his doctors advising him on food for HIV patients. Tragically, this was not an isolated incident. Many individuals were diagnosed with these infections but were not informed for a significant period of time. The scale of this disaster, which is considered the worst in NHS history, is estimated to have affected around 5,000 people, and more than half have since passed away. The fact that these individuals were given blood products to save their lives but instead were infected with deadly viruses raises profound questions about what transpired during this period.

    • The UK's plasma shortage led to risky imports from the USThe demand for plasma in the UK during the 1970s and 1980s outpaced the local supply, resulting in the importation of risky donations from the US, causing a contaminated blood crisis and thousands of infections with viruses like hepatitis C.

      The contaminated blood crisis in the NHS during the 1970s and 1980s was caused by the demand for life-saving plasma for hemophiliacs outpacing the UK's supply. As a result, the UK turned to the US for plasma, where donations were paid for, leading to a system rife with risky donors and inadequate screening. This resulted in thousands of people, including hemophiliacs and non-hemophiliacs, being infected with viruses like hepatitis C. The discovery of how to freeze and thaw plasma for hemophiliac treatment in the 1960s led to significant medical advancements, but the ensuing demand for this vital resource ultimately led to this tragic contamination scandal.

    • Contaminated Blood Scandal in the NHSThousands were infected with hepatitis C from contaminated blood in the NHS during the 1970s and 1980s, affecting hemophiliacs and others. The tragedy involved infected blood from the US and experimentation on children.

      The contaminated blood supply in the NHS during the 1970s and 1980s led to a significant number of people, including hemophiliacs and even prominent figures like Anita Roddick, being infected with hepatitis C. This tragedy began as early as the 1970s, with reports of infected blood coming from the United States. Despite these warnings, the contaminated blood continued to be used within the NHS, affecting not only hemophiliacs but also others who received blood transfusions. One of the most shocking aspects of this story is the experimentation on children to determine if the blood products were infected with deadly diseases. Anita Roddick, the founder of The Body Shop, is one example of a prominent figure who was infected and later died from complications related to hepatitis C. The long-term effects of hepatitis C mean that the true scale of this tragedy may never be fully known, as some people may still be unaware that they were infected.

    • Children with hemophilia unintentionally infected with HIV through contaminated blood productsDuring the HIV epidemic, children with hemophilia were unknowingly infected due to untested blood products. Ethical considerations and rigorous testing are crucial in medical research.

      During the HIV epidemic in the 1980s, children with hemophilia were unintentionally infected with the virus through contaminated blood products. Although initial batches were tested for infectivity in chimpanzees, it was impossible for manufacturers to guarantee this for all future batches. To determine the reduced infectivity of various concentrates, human trials were conducted, often involving children due to their prevalence in hemophilia treatment centers. One such trial took place in 1982 at Lord Mayor Treloar College in Hampshire, England, where 50 children were infected with HIV. Ade Goodyear, one of the survivors, was informed of his infection in a shocking manner in 1985. The school, once a magnet for hemophiliacs, continues to operate but no longer attracts the same number of patients. This tragic episode underscores the importance of rigorous testing and ethical considerations in medical research.

    • Former students sue school over HIV-tainted blood, placing blame on NHSNegligence in healthcare can lead to devastating consequences, emphasizing the importance of accountability and transparency.

      During a specific time period, former students of a school filed a class action lawsuit against it, with the school believing it did not fail in its duty of care and instead placing the liability on the NHS. Another significant story involves Colin Smith, a young boy infected with HIV at age two in 1983, despite a memo issued a month prior advising against using the infected blood supply. Shockingly, Colin was given the blood for a routine procedure, making him an unwitting guinea pig in the ongoing investigation of the blood's safety. His tragic story, resulting in his death at a weight less than that of a six-month-old baby, is a heart-wrenching reminder of the consequences of such experiments. This discussion highlights the importance of accountability, transparency, and the potential consequences of negligence in healthcare and other industries.

    • Unexpected political circumstances lead to a public inquiry into the infected blood scandalThe UK infected blood scandal, marked by indifference and lack of accountability, was only investigated due to unexpected political circumstances and a journalist's persistence.

      The scandal of infected blood in the UK, which led to countless suffering and deaths, was met with indifference and lack of accountability for those involved, including the physician who administered the contaminated factor 8. The families affected were further ostracized by their communities during their time of need. A public inquiry into the scandal finally came about in an unexpected way, when the DUP, a crucial party in the coalition government, joined the call for an investigation. It took a journalist's persistence and a change in political circumstances for the inquiry to be initiated. Despite the long and difficult journey, the campaigners' determination and perseverance led to a significant step towards justice for the victims and their families.

    • The Infected Blood Scandal: A Lack of Transparency and WarningsThousands lost their lives due to a lack of transparency and warnings about risks in blood clotting factor Factor 8, leaving families with unanswered questions and unresolved guilt.

      The infected blood scandal in the UK, as recounted in the interview, involved a lack of transparency and adequate warning regarding the risks associated with a blood clotting factor called Factor 8. The interviewee, who was a government official involved in the issue, was caught off guard when he received a call about a public inquiry just two weeks into his new job. During the inquiry, powerful testimonies from affected families were emotional, and the interviewee was not informed of any risks or differences between NHS and American products. Despite hindsight suggesting that the department could have acted differently, leading to the deaths of nearly 3,000 people, the necessary infrastructure and funding for self-sufficiency in blood product production was never implemented. Two key figures, Nick Sainsbury and John Cornes, who gave evidence to the inquiry, died before its conclusions were published. The lack of action and transparency during this crisis had significant consequences, leaving many families with unanswered questions and unresolved guilt.

    • NHS Contaminated Blood Scandal: Seeking Justice and ReliefDespite ongoing harm from the NHS contaminated blood scandal, victims seek justice. Meanwhile, Kleenex Ultra Soft Tissues offer allergy relief, and 1-800-Flowers.com provides thoughtful Mother's Day gifts.

      The NHS contaminated blood scandal, a tragic event in which hundreds of people were infected with HIV and Hepatitis C through contaminated blood transfusions, is still causing harm and demanding answers. One hemophiliac dies every 4 days due to contaminated blood poisoning. Victims and their families are seeking justice and closure. Meanwhile, Kleenex Ultra Soft Tissues can provide relief for allergy symptoms this season, allowing us to enjoy the change of seasons without worrying about irritated skin. This Mother's Day, let's celebrate the moms in our lives with thoughtful gifts from 1-800-Flowers.com. The NHS scandal is a stark reminder of the importance of accountability and justice, while Kleenex and 1-800-Flowers offer comfort and relief in their respective ways.

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