Speakeasy forum

General discussion

Canada Red Cross tries to put blood scandal to rest

TORONTO (Reuters) - Victims of Canada's tainted blood scandal had a chance to air their stories in an Ontario court on Thursday as the Canadian Red Cross was formally sentenced for distributing blood products contaminated by donors who suffered from HIV and hepatitis C.

A court in Hamilton, Ontario, handed the agency the maximum fine of C$5,000 ($4,065) for violating the Food and Drugs Act. It has already provided C$70 million in compensation to more than 10,000 victims and Canadian governments agreed in 1998 on a C$1.1 billion compensation plan.

The Red Cross was sentenced after nine people read victim-impact statements in a hearing that spanned 3-1/2 hours.

"They talked about how devastating the disease is to them," said John Plater, a lawyer and member of the Canadian Hemophilia Society, who was also made ill by the tainted blood. "But they also talked about how devastating and how frustrating (it was) trying to get answers and bring these people to account and how many years it has taken.

"That really struck a chord with me ... the wasted time."

About 1,000 Canadians were infected with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS in the 1980s before the Red Cross began testing blood donations. An estimated 20,000 people have been infected with hepatitis C, a debilitating and often deadly liver disease.

The Red Cross pleaded guilty in May to violating the country's Food and Drugs Act -- the first time the charity admitted it broke the law.

http://www.reuters.ca/locales/c_newsArticle.jsp;:42c59653:fda71a39583ec6ea?type=topNews&localeKey=en_CA&storyID=8955350

Discussion is locked
You are posting a reply to: Canada Red Cross tries to put blood scandal to rest
The posting of advertisements, profanity, or personal attacks is prohibited. Please refer to our CNET Forums policies for details. All submitted content is subject to our Terms of Use.
Track this discussion and email me when there are updates

If you're asking for technical help, please be sure to include all your system info, including operating system, model number, and any other specifics related to the problem. Also please exercise your best judgment when posting in the forums--revealing personal information such as your e-mail address, telephone number, and address is not recommended.

You are reporting the following post: Canada Red Cross tries to put blood scandal to rest
This post has been flagged and will be reviewed by our staff. Thank you for helping us maintain CNET's great community.
Sorry, there was a problem flagging this post. Please try again now or at a later time.
If you believe this post is offensive or violates the CNET Forums' Usage policies, you can report it below (this will not automatically remove the post). Once reported, our moderators will be notified and the post will be reviewed.
Collapse -
works for me

In reply to: Your link doesn't work

ORONTO (Reuters) - Victims of Canada's tainted blood scandal had a chance to air their stories in an Ontario court on Thursday as the Canadian Red Cross was formally sentenced for distributing blood products contaminated by donors who suffered from HIV and hepatitis C.

A court in Hamilton, Ontario, handed the agency the maximum fine of C$5,000 ($4,065) for violating the Food and Drugs Act. It has already provided C$70 million in compensation to more than 10,000 victims and Canadian governments agreed in 1998 on a C$1.1 billion compensation plan.

The Red Cross was sentenced after nine people read victim-impact statements in a hearing that spanned 3-1/2 hours.

"They talked about how devastating the disease is to them," said John Plater, a lawyer and member of the Canadian Hemophilia Society, who was also made ill by the tainted blood. "But they also talked about how devastating and how frustrating (it was) trying to get answers and bring these people to account and how many years it has taken.

"That really struck a chord with me ... the wasted time."

About 1,000 Canadians were infected with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS in the 1980s before the Red Cross began testing blood donations. An estimated 20,000 people have been infected with hepatitis C, a debilitating and often deadly liver disease.

The Red Cross pleaded guilty in May to violating the country's Food and Drugs Act -- the first time the charity admitted it broke the law.

Thursday's sentence included C$1.5 million for a scholarship fund for students affected by the tragedy and for a project to improve health care practice. According to the Red Cross the sentence "closed a sad chapter in its history."

"This afternoon was particularly painful and I have maybe only one word to describe that -- tragedy," said Pierre Duplessis, the Canadian Red Cross's chief executive.

The Red Cross was forced to seek bankruptcy protection in the late 1990s and has transferred its blood supply operations to a government-funded agency.

"Blood is over, it's done, it's finished, so hopefully for us, we will be able to turn that page in our history," Duplessis said.

Collapse -
(NT) (NT) now it works for me, you fixed it

In reply to: works for me

Collapse -
Maybe the intenational Red Cross should be

In reply to: Canada Red Cross tries to put blood scandal to rest

keeping an eye on things...

Collapse -
let them keep an eye on all others

In reply to: Maybe the intenational Red Cross should be

they are as bad as the un

the usa red cross i trust

Collapse -
Re: the usa red cross i trust

In reply to: let them keep an eye on all others

in a word.... don't...

in all civilised (western) countries, blood was collected and used after the HIV scare first started, (the 'logic' was "good decent godfearing people don't have aids")

i got hepC after being given blood, did i sue? did i #$#@! because '**** happens'

if the red cross tested EVERY pint of blood that is donored for EVERYTHING, there would be about 23 pints of blood on the market because the cost would break the system...

just cross your fingers and hope you're lucky..

.

Collapse -
As previously noted this is very old news.All of these cases

In reply to: Re: the usa red cross i trust

of HIV and Hep C were contracted before blood was as thoroughly screened as it has been since 1995. That's ten full years ago. There have been no reported cases arising from blood or blood products since then. The case was settled before we went to Britain in 1997. The settlement for Canada runs to over a billion dollars as mentioned in the article posted. Exactly the same infections occurred in the United States though without the national response and hearings carried out in Canada. A number of prominent people were reported as having died of HIV contracted during surgery or post operative blood transfusions including the dean and grand old man of the model airplane fraternity Carl Goldberg around 1988. Perhaps it would be useful to look at the US record on the subject before using it as a bludgeon to beat up Canada, Mark.

The national Red Cross organizations are quite separated from the International Red Cross which is concerned primarily with humanitarian aid and the monitoring of certain international conventions on the treatment of prisoners. National Red Cross organizations do local disaster relief and handle the blood supply. The trouble arises when national donation doesn't meet national needs and blood products get shared between nations or organizations which have different standards. The HIV crisis upped the cost of testing blood enormously (at least for the first ten years 1985 to 1995) and a single dose of the clotting factors for a Haemophiliac patient or for people with other bleeding problems is derived from many donors.

I would also point out that there were a lot of private blood collection clinics in the United States some of whom were found to be less than careful about their screening and collection procedures during court cases in the US and subsequent state-wide investigations. During the hearings on the Tainted Blood Crisis here (yes, there were Parliamentary hearings and a number of court cases) it was revealed that blood products were freely exchanged between the Red Cross and private clinics from other countries. As far as I know, that is either no longer the case or that the private clinics are required to maintain Red Cross standards before their products are acceptable.

I admit that I haven't even thought about this issue in almost a decade and thought it to be long buried, but trust Mark to dredge it up again.

I am very sorry for what happened to you Jonah, but I don't think it could happen now with the safeguards now in place. Of course should another blood borne infection occur I would expect the same window of infections to occur. Bureaucracies don't respond quickly in a crisis.

Rob

Collapse -
i just saw it rob so and not old news to many

In reply to: As previously noted this is very old news.All of these cases

you dont like me posting about it to bad,

Collapse -
Mark didn't dredge up anything

In reply to: As previously noted this is very old news.All of these cases

This has been in CURRENT news. Indeed his link was to a Canadian Reuters story dated July 2 (neither his link or the one I get in Google seem to be working today :() This appears to be a working link to the same story.

Canadian Hemophilia Society to Attend Sentencing of Canadian Red Cross Re: Tainted Blood Charges


How you missed this and ignorantly portray this as old news is beyond me.

"But they also talked about how devastating and how frustrating (it was) trying to get answers and bring these people to account and how many years it has taken.

"That really struck a chord with me ... the wasted time."


Maybe folks like you treating this tragedy as "old news" and not worthy of attention are the reason why it took so long? Just a thought ...

Collapse -
So basically ...

In reply to: As previously noted this is very old news.All of these cases

... the US Red Cross also "knew enough during this period to warn blood recipients of the dangers and screen potential donors to reduce risks to the system", but didn't?

ANYTHING to turn your bashing light back on the US because Canada is perfect huh?

In the early days of AIDS there were unavoidable infections through the blood supply. It SOUNDS like the Canadian Red Cross was slow to adopt measures to prevent them. They are not alone, our own CDC has very dirty hands IMO regarding the treatment of HIV as an infectious disease threatening the public -- and, frankly, continues to do so by suppressing reports regarding the ineffectiveness of condoms in preventing the spread of lifethreatening STD's.

Popular Forums

icon
Computer Newbies 10,686 discussions
icon
Computer Help 54,365 discussions
icon
Laptops 21,181 discussions
icon
Networking & Wireless 16,313 discussions
icon
Phones 17,137 discussions
icon
Security 31,287 discussions
icon
TVs & Home Theaters 22,101 discussions
icon
Windows 7 8,164 discussions
icon
Windows 10 2,657 discussions

GIVEAWAY

Enter to win* a free holiday tech gift!

CNET's giving five lucky winners the gift of their choice valued up to $250!