Thousands of infected blood scandal survivors will receive £100,000 in compensation, the government has announced, but campaigners have said the majority of those affected have been overlooked.

Outgoing Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said he wants the money to go to victims and their surviving partners, calling it the worst treatment disaster in NHS history.

Campaigners said the announcement fails to recognize most of the family members affected by the scandal, who will be deprived of this round of interim payments.

The fiasco resulted in approximately 2,400 deaths of patients infected with HIV and hepatitis C from tainted blood products in the 1970s and 1980s.

Final recommendations from a public inquiry into compensation for a wider group of people – such as bereaved parents and children of victims – are expected at the end of the inquiry next year.

The government has said it aims to make payments to infected people and bereaved partners in England by the end of October. The same payments will be made in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Mr Johnson said: “While nothing can compensate for the pain and suffering endured by those affected by this tragic injustice, we are taking action to do good for the victims and those who have tragically lost their partners by ensuring that that they receive these interim payments as soon as possible.

“We will continue to support all those affected by this horrific tragedy, and I want to personally pay tribute to all those who fought so steadfastly for justice.”

Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, Kit Malthouse, said: ‘Those affected by the infected blood scandal have suffered terribly for many years and this heartbreaking and unimaginable pain has been compounded by the financial uncertainty that many have faced. .

“These interim payments will start the process of securing that certainty. My priority is to get the money to these people as quickly as possible.

“Of course, no amount of money will compensate for the turmoil the victims and their loved ones have faced, but I hope these payments will help show that we are on their side and will do everything in our power to help them. sustain.”

Health Secretary Steve Barclay said: ‘The infected blood scandal should never have happened. By accepting Sir Brian Langstaff’s recommendations today, we are taking an important step in righting this historic wrong for the thousands of people infected and the bereaved partners left behind.

Most of those involved suffered from hemophilia, a blood clotting disorder, and depended on regular injections of the American product Factor VIII to survive.

They did not know that they were receiving contaminated factor VIII from people paid to donate, including prisoners and drug addicts.

Patients have received the product for years despite repeated warnings at the top of government.

New cases of HIV and hepatitis continued to be diagnosed decades after the first infections, leading to many early deaths.

Activist Sue Threakall, whose husband Bob died aged 47 in 1991 after contracting HIV from tainted blood, said: ‘It’s not just about the money – it’s It’s about acknowledging the people whose lives were destroyed, the young adults who grew up their whole lives without their parents and they weren’t recognized, and the parents whose young children died in their arms.

Bob Threakall with his son David in 1985 (PA)

“We have always said that there will always be families who will not know what they can claim. Their lives could have been so much better supported.

Mark Fox, 44, who contracted hepatitis C after being treated with a tainted blood product for haemophilia as a child, said the announcement was important as it represented an acknowledgment of wrongdoing.

The former cosmetic technician from Seaham in County Durham, who is among those due to receive compensation, said: ‘It’s not about compensation, it’s about someone apologizing .

“It’s that they tried to hide it, and so many people tried to hide it under the rug – if you screwed up, have the balls to accept it. Grow up, be an adult.

“Compensation will help so many people. Luckily, I’m not dead yet – I don’t know how long I have left, but some kids have lost their mums and dads, so I’m glad there’s this recognition.

Wednesday’s announcement follows recommendations from Sir Robert Francis QC, who led a review into compensation for those affected by the scandal and said there would be a ‘strong moral case’ for offering money to victims, regardless of any question of legal liability or guilt, if certain criteria were met.

He has previously said: ‘There are those who fear that they will not survive long enough to see, let alone enjoy, the fruits of compensation.’

Rosemary Calder, whose 25-year-old son Nicky died in 1999 of HIV after receiving an infected blood product to treat haemophilia, said the wait continues for bereaved families.

Ms Calder, 74, whose family moved from north London to Newport Pagnell in Buckinghamshire after her son was called ‘Aids boy’ at school, said: ‘Once again parents and children who have lost loved ones are simply ignored.

“Parents feel so discouraged and discouraged that they cannot be recognized.

“It’s not about the money, it’s about the lives of their children.

“So many parents have suffered financially because they had to give up their jobs, had to move because of all the stigma, people lost their jobs – it was never acknowledged.

“I think it’s (the terminable allowance) a step in the right direction, but there’s still a long way to go.”

The inquiry, which was announced by then-Prime Minister Theresa May in 2017 and started the following year, gathered testimony from more than 5,000 witnesses at hearings in the four countries of the Kingdom. -United. It should be finished next year.

It presented heartbreaking evidence from patients and their families who described being kept in the dark about the risk of HIV infection in hemophilia patients, having had to keep their diagnoses confidential for fear of being slandered at the time of AIDS crisis and living with the physical effects. of HIV.

Others have accused the government of an “industry-scale cover-up” amid allegations of inappropriate treatments given to patients, tests carried out on people without their knowledge and results withheld for several years.

Investigation of infected bloodLauren Palmer testified at the inquest (Joe Gammie/PA)

Lauren Palmer, whose parents died with HIV eight days apart in 1993, said: “It was all so preventable, and then people went to great lengths to cover it up and not tell patients to how serious it was. Everything from the start was just plain wrong.

The 39-year-old, from Bristol, added: “Factor VIII was supposed to prolong my dad’s life, not take him and my mum prematurely.”

Kate Burt, CEO of the Hemophilia Society, said: “Finally, after nearly five decades, the government has accepted that it must compensate those infected as a result of the tainted blood scandal.

“This is an important development. However, the majority of those bereaved – including the parents and children of those who died – will receive nothing.

“Steps must be taken now to put in place a viable scheme that can provide full compensation quickly and fairly to all those who have suffered devastating losses from this NHS treatment disaster.”

Des Collins, a senior partner at Collins Solicitors, which represents some of the affected families, said many had “once again been ignored” in the government’s announcement on Wednesday.

He said: “This is good news for those who are still with us and whose lives and health have been ruined by the infected blood scandal. Many of them cannot work and are in desperate need of funds. to survive. It is also an important sign that the wheels of justice are beginning to turn in favor of those affected by this terrible scandal.

“However, this commitment is far from the end of the story. These are interim payments, but in no way do they represent meaningful compensation for those who continue to suffer day after day from the terrible failures of the Department of Health in the 1970s and 1980s.

“The payments promised today do not give any recognition or benefit in any way to those affected more broadly – those who have lost children, parents and loved ones, those who have cared for the victims who sadly no longer with us and those whose families have been devastated by the tragedy at the hands of the Ministry of Health.

“These people too have fought for decades for an award and cannot take comfort in today’s announcement. Again, for no reason, it looks like they have to wait.

“The fight must continue for full and appropriate compensation for all who have suffered and who have yet again been ignored in today’s announcement.

“Given the lack of mention (of bereaved parents and children) in today’s announcement, it is once again as if these victims did not exist.”

Jason Evans, founder of Factor 8, a non-profit group campaigning for victims of the scandal and their families, said: “The Prime Minister said today that ‘we will continue to support all those affected by this horrible tragedy”, but they do nothing to help most of the families. It is one more scandal in the scandal.

“Similarly, Steve Barclay tells us today that ‘work is underway to ensure that those affected by this tragedy receive the support they rightly deserve’, and today’s message is that for most families, what they deserve right now is nothing.”