To examine the circumstances in which men, women and children1 treated by national Health Services in the United Kingdom (collectively, the "NHS")2 were given infected blood and infected blood products, in particular since 1970, including:
- the treatment of men, women and children who were given infected blood or infected blood products through transfusion or other means;
- the treatment of men, women and children with haemophilia or other bleeding disorders who were given infected blood products (recognising that the position of those with mild, moderate and severe bleeding disorders may require separate consideration during the Inquiry);
- what was, or ought to have been, known at any relevant time about the risks of infection associated with blood donations and blood products, by Government (in particular the Department of Health3), pharmaceutical companies, any relevant licensing authorities, NHS bodies, the medical profession, and other organisations or individuals involved in decision-making in relation to the use of blood and blood products;
- to what extent people given infected blood or infected blood products were warned beforehand of the risk that they might thereby be exposed to infection, and if so whether such warnings as were given were sufficient and appropriate;
- the adequacy of the systems adopted for the screening of donors, and the collection, testing, licensing and supply of blood and blood products for use by the NHS;
- the United Kingdom's failure to become self-sufficient in the production of blood products (and consideration of any relevant differences in terms of self- sufficiency between England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland);
- the actions of Government (in particular the Department of Health), pharmaceutical companies, licensing authorities, NHS bodies, the medical profession, and other organisations or individuals involved in decision-making in relation to the use of blood and blood products;
- why people were given infected blood or infected blood products, including the nature and extent of any commercial or other interests which may have affected decision-making;
- the extent to which the supply of infected blood or infected blood products could, and if so, should, have been avoided or been stopped earlier, and if so how best this might have been achieved.
1 Including all gender identities.
2 References to NHS used throughout is intended to encompass the National Health Service in England, Health and Social Care in Northern Ireland, NHS Scotland, NHS Wales and their predecessors.
3 References to Department of Health used throughout is intended to encompass the Department of Health and Social Care, the Department of Health in Northern Ireland, Health and Social Care Directorates of the Scottish Government, the Department for Health and Social Services in Wales and their predecessors.