This equalities analysis accompanies the Scottish Government’s proposals to provide new Scottish arrangements to replace the current UK-wide payment schemes for those affected by HIV/hepatitis C infection via NHS treatment. The existing schemes were set up by the UK Government from 1988 onwards for people infected with, or affected by, HIV and/or hepatitis C as a consequence of treatment with NHS-supplied blood or blood products before September 1991. While the UK Government and devolved administrations have steadily increased the support available as a result of past reviews, over time the support system has become complex, and has attracted significant criticisms from those it is intended to help.
Those primarily affected by the reforms will be infected individuals and affected family members of infected individuals, particularly those who are/were financially dependent on support given by the schemes. This includes spouses or partners who do not work full-time because of caring responsibilities; bereaved spouses or partners and any dependent children.
The Scottish Government is proposing to improve the financial support available for all those affected, who will include many of the equality groups. There are no negative impacts on any equalities groups. All those infected and their families should be better off (or at least receive the same support) under the new scheme as compared to the current arrangements.