Child Given HIV Blood! Family Wants JUSTICE!

Angela Newcombe, a British mother was kept in the dark for three years after her son contracted HIV from a blood transfusion. The infection happened as a result of tainted blood products being furnished to her son’s school, a fact which only came to light as the result of a public inquiry.

Angela’s son Neil Hilliard, who lives in Bidenford in North Devon, was a student at Lord Mayor’s Treloar’s College, suffers from hemophilia. The boarding school is located in Hampshire, and specializes in teaching children with disabilities. He died from complications of AIDS in 1994, at the age of 22. His mother was never told about either her son’s HIV diagnosis or his treatment program.

She had, she said, a right to know, adding that officials had put her family at risk by keeping her in the dark.

Hemophilia is a genetic disorder which interferes with normal blood clotting, and can lead to spontaneous and uncontrolled bleeding.

The Infected Blood Inquiry, which opened a case in 2019 and heard the testimony of hundreds of witnesses, is due to be delivered to the public soon. Treloar’s College had a NHS-run hemophilia specialist center on site, and offered treatment to children from 1974 to 1987. A doctor at the center sent a letter, dated July 1983, to Mr. Hilliard’s consultant, saying that he was conducting an “AIDS-related” investigation the consultant.

Other letters uncovered by the Inquiry revealed that, in October 1984, Hilliard tested positive for HIV at the age of 12. Mr. Hilliard’s doctor at the North Devon District Hospital’s hematology center was notified of this in March 1985.

Angela Newcombe has said that neither she nor her son were told about the test results until three years later, in December of 1987. The notification admonished them not to say anything about the matter to anyone.

Seventy-five students of the school have since died from hepatitis and HIV contracted from tainted blood that they received at the center.