Newsletter – February

The Society Appoints new Legal team

The Haemophilia Society has ended its association with Malcomson Law UK Ltd, meaning the firm will no longer represent The Society at the Infected Blood Inquiry.

We have appointed Eversheds Sutherland as our new legal representative. This is a UK-wide firm with branches in England, Scotland, Wales and deep knowledge of Northern Ireland. It provided and led the team of lawyers for the inquiries into Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust Inquiry, as well as the Shipman Inquiry, the Bloody Sunday Inquiry, and the Jersey Care Inquiry which concerned child sex abuse. Currently, the firm acts for two core participants in the Grenfell Tower Inquiry.

Eversheds Sutherland knows how public inquiries in the UK work inside out and it has in-depth experience of investigating and exposing failings and incompetence within NHS governance structures.

All our members can be assured that we have thought long and hard about this decision and we are confident that this change of representation is the right way forward for The Society and its individual members. We do understand that, for some members, this decision will cause surprise and anxiety, for which we are very sorry. However, we firmly believe that The Society is in the right hands. Anyone who has filled out an expression of interest form in relation to being represented at the Infected Blood Inquiry has been contacted separately with more details about how to proceed.

We want to reassure our members, the wider haemophilia community and the Infected Blood Inquiry itself that we will play our full part in ensuring that the truth into the contaminated blood scandal is exposed and justice is delivered.

If you have any questions about this decision, please contact us at
[email protected]

Inquiry names expert group members

The first appointments to the Infected Blood Inquiry’s expert groups have been announced.

Covering the issues of haematology, transfusion medicine, hepatology, virology, medical ethics, public health and administration, psychosocial impact and statistics, the groups will analyse evidence submitted to the Inquiry.

Their advice will help the Inquiry examine how men, women and children in the UK were given infected blood and/or infected blood products, the impact on their families, how the authorities responded, the nature of any support provided following infection and questions of consent.
The Inquiry is the first to use expert groups to examine specialist, or difficult issues, rather than have them sit as panellists or assessors. The expert groups’ reports will be public and disagreements will be tested in public hearings.

At present 21 experts have been appointed across the five groups, with more expected to be added as the Inquiry progresses.

Inquiry hearing dates

The Inquiry has released the dates of the hearings for 2019. Hearings will take place in cities around the UK to hear evidence from people infected and affected. You will need to register with the Inquiry to attend. We are awaiting further information on this process.

London 30 April-3 May & 7 May-10 MayFleetbank House
Belfast 21 May-24 MayBelfast International Conference
Centre
London 4 June-7 JuneFleetbank House
Leeds 11 June-14 June & 18 June -21 JuneCrowne Plaza Hotel
Edinburgh 2 July – 5 July & 8 July-11 JulyEdinburgh International Conference Centre
Cardiff 23-26 JulyRoyal Welsh College of Music & Drama
London 8-11 October & 15-18
October
Fleetbank House

The Inquiry has released the dates of the hearings for 2019. Hearings will take place in cities around the UK to hear evidence from people infected and affected. You will need to register with the Inquiry to attend. We are awaiting further information on this process.

Join us at the Haemophilia Society Living Well Conference 2019

This year’s free conference takes place in London on 16 March. It will focus on retaining independence and control of your bleeding disorder and its treatment. Speakers include nurses, social workers and psychologists who will offer advice on housing, mental wellbeing and pain management.
There will also be an update on the Infected Blood Public Inquiry as well as advice and guidance on manging the effects of Hepatitis and HIV. Speakers will include representatives from sources of further support as well as The Haemophilia Society’s inquiry team.

Reserve your place now by emailing [email protected] to request a link to a booking form or call us on 020 7939 0780.

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