Guardian Weekend magazine – Haemophilia factor VIII blood scandal



I was commissioned to photograph some of the people affected by the horrific haemophilia blood scandal of the 1970s and 80s and which continues to devastate lives to this day. The British government of the time, imported blood from the USA which was unregulated and contaminated with HIV and hepatitis C – nearly 5000 hemophiliacs were treated by the NHS with products derived from this blood – over half have since died. Astoundingly, despite later knowing the risks of the imported blood – the British government continued to buy and treat hemophiliacs with this tainted blood. There is yet to be an inquest or for any person or organisation to be held accountable.

I photographed Lauren Palmer, whose parents died from HIV when she was 9- within weeks of each other. Steve and Su Dyford who are prominent in the Tainted Blood campaign group – Steve was infected with Hepatitis C 30 years ago, changing his and their life irrevocably. Colin and Jan Smith’s two year old baby, also Colin was infected with HIV after being treated with contaminated factor VIII in 1983 – he died in 1991.

Full article by Simon Hattenstone here


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