INDEPENDENT PUBLIC INQUIRY: Contaminated Blood & Blood Products

Frequently Asked Questions
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Questions
What is the status of the Public Inquiry?
Why is the Inquiry happening now?
If the inquiry is not funded from the public purse, who is funding it?
Who is expected to provide evidence?
Will the public hearing transcripts be made available?
How long will the Inquiry take?
Will there be public hearings and where will they be held?

 


What is the status of the Public Inquiry?

The Inquiry is entirely independent, but is not a Parliamentary or Government inquiry, and is being chaired publicly by The Rt. Hon The Lord Archer of Sandwell QC.

Lord Archer of Sandwell QC has had a long and very distinguished career in the legal profession and, as a former Solicitor General, now sits as a Labour life peer in the House of Lords. Lord Turnberg, the immediate past President of the Royal College of Physicians, will join Lord Archer, as Medical Assessor. The Inquiry is also very fortunate to have the resource of the very experienced Judith Willetts. The now retired Dr Norman Jones Consulting Physician St Thomas’ Hospital (Emeritus) will help as a consultant to the inquiry.



Why is the Inquiry happening now?

Following enormous effort by the Haemophilia Society and various related organisations, The Rt Hon The Lord Morris of Manchester AQ, QSO and other parliamentarians, the overwhelming consensus was to call for a public inquiry to report upon the circumstances that have led to what Lord Robert Winston has described as, “the worst treatment disaster in the history of the NHS”. The time is now right for a full independent Public Inquiry.

Of note particular is that public inquiries have already been conducted into this very important public health issue in Ireland, Canada, New Zealand and Japan.



If the inquiry is not funded from the public purse, who is funding it?

Independent private donations.



Who is expected to provide evidence?

Patients;
Dependants;
Bereaved families;
Medical and Scientific Community;
The Government;
Parliamentarians;
Legal representatives



Will the public hearing transcripts be made available?

Yes, they will all be posted onto the website within the Hearing Transcripts area.



How long will the Inquiry take?

It is estimated that the Inquiry will run for between three to four months, after which The Rt Hon The Lord Archer of Sandwell QC will announce the date for the publication of his report.



Will there be public hearings and where will they be held?

Yes all the hearings will be heard in public and conducted by The Rt Hon The Lord Archer of Sandwell QC, after a short period collating data from various sources. A timetable and list of witnesses will be regularly posted onto the website, along with media alerts.

The venue of the Public Inquiry will be at:
1 Abbey Garden, Great College Street, London, SW1P 3SE.
(Part of the Palace of Westminster)

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