My written Parliamentary question to the Secretary of State for Health on dependent children in the consultation on proposed reforms of the scheme supporting those affected by contaminated blood:
Stephen Kinnock: To ask the Secretary of State for Health, pursuant to the oral contribution of the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Quality of 20 July 2015, Official Report, column 1227, for what reasons dependent children are not included in the consultation seeking views on proposed reforms to the schemes supporting those infected with, or affected by, HIV and/or hepatitis C through NHS-supplied blood products.
Jane Ellison: Those already infected with hepatitis C and/or HIV through National Health Service-supplied blood or blood products and all bereaved partners/spouses of those infected are entitled to apply for discretionary means-tested payments of support, which could be used for dependent children. The charitable bodies make payments on the basis of need, in accordance with their specific objectives, enabling such support to be targeted to those in greater financial need. The consultation seeks views on providing discretionary payments for travel and accommodation costs relating to ill health. These payments are not guaranteed from year to year and those in receipt of these payments are informed of this. Responses to the consultation will help us to decide if this is a viable proposal and we welcome any suggestions respondents may have in relation to the proposals and what would be of benefit to them. No decisions will be made about the shape and structure of a new scheme until after the consultation closes on 15 April 2016.