§ Mr. Vaz
To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) how many haemophiliacs have been infected with HIV due to contaminated blood products for the period(a) since 1979, (b) since 1985 and (c) in the current year;
(2) how many haemophiliacs have died as a result of having been infected with HIV due to contaminated blood products for the period (a) since 1979, (b) since 1985 and (c) in the current year.
§ Mr. Freeman
I refer the hon. Member to the reply I gave to the hon. Member for Linlithgow (Mr. Dalyell) and682W the right hon. Member for Stoke-on-Trent, South (Mr. Ashley) on 7 November which gives the information currently available for the numbers of haemophiliacs reported as HIV-antibody positive.
The latest information available on the numbers of haemophiliacs with AIDS known to have died in the United Kingdom is given in the table. No reliable figures are available for years before 1983.
Number For the period 1983–85 14 For the period 1986–88 71 For 1989 up to 31 October 1989 22 Total 107
§ Mr. Freeman
The safety of the blood supply in this country is maintained in two ways. First, since August 1983 potential donors have been given a leaflet which asks those at risk of HIV infection not to give blood. Secondly, since October 1985 all blood donations have been tested for antibodies to HIV-1. In addition, since June 1988 all donations from donors who have visited certain specified west African countries where HIV-2 is more common have been tested for antibodies to HIV-2.
All blood products (home-produced or imported) used in this country, including Factor VIII which is used in the treatment of haemophilia, are now made from screened plasma, and are treated to inactivate HIV. All products concerned are also tested by the National Institute of Biological Standards Control under its batch release system.