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Health: Thalidomide

Volume 713: debated on Wednesday 21 October 2009


Asked by

To ask Her Majesty's Government what action they are taking to support people affected by thalidomide. [HL5625]

To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they will meet people affected by thalidomide together with representatives of the firm Diageo to discuss increased compensation. [HL5626]

Thalidomide survivors are already compensated through a private settlement agreed between the Thalidomide Trust, the body established to administer payments to survivors, and Diageo PLC. We have no plans to meet representatives from Diageo to discuss further compensation. This is a matter solely for the parties concerned.

Those living with the effects of thalidomide are able to access the full range of health and social care. My colleague, the Minister of State for Health, has already met the National Advisory Council to the Thalidomide Trust and hopes to meet it again on 22 October to explore ways of improving access to personal budgets and direct payments in social care, as well as developing a pilot that tests the use of personal budgets for thalidomide survivors. This will potentially tailor help to each individual according to their needs.