Need for haemophilia trust fund decreasing

Tuesday 29 April 2014 22.08
A Dáil debate on haemophilia and HIV led to a general election 25 years ago this week
A Dáil debate on haemophilia and HIV led to a general election 25 years ago this week

The chief executive of the Irish Haemophilia Society has said better treatments for HIV and Hepatitis C will mean that the need for a trust fund for haemophilia sufferers will decrease over time.

Brian O'Mahony said just 37 of the over 100 people with haemophilia who contracted HIV in the 1980s are still alive, meaning dwindling numbers of people need assistance from the fund.

A total of 107 people with the hereditary blood clotting disorder were infected in the 1980s after being given contaminated blood products by the State.

By 1988 the full impact of AIDS was starting to become apparent and four members of the Irish Haemophilia Society had died.

This week marks 25 years since a landmark Dáil debate on the issue, which led to the 1989 General Election.

Speaking on RTÉ's Morning Ireland, Mr O'Mahony said HIV treatment is now much better.

He said: "There are better treatments coming down the line for Hepatitis C, which we hope all of our members will be able to avail of.

"In the future we hope to see a cure for Hepatitis C and the need for the trust fund will decrease over time."