Royal Commission of Inquiry on the Blood System in Canada

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The Royal Commission of Inquiry on the Blood System in Canada, more commonly referred to as the Krever Commission or Krever Inquiry, was a Royal commission headed by Mr Justice Horace Krever established by the Canadian Government in October 1993. It was set up to investigate allegations that the system of government, private, and non-governmental organizations responsible for supplying blood and blood products to the health care system had allowed contaminated blood to be used.

Background

Since the 1940s, the blood system had largely been the responsibility of the Canadian Red Cross Society. This independent charitable body supplied donated blood to hospitals or, if the blood was past its expiry date, gave it to Connaught Laboratories, the major producer of blood products in Canada. Connaught had initially been a non-profit company operated by the University of Toronto; by the 1980s it had been sold into the private sector.

In the late 1970s a crisis emerged. Thousands of people were being infected with HIV and Hepatitis C. It became apparent that inadequately screened blood, often coming from high risk populations, was entering the system.

Recommendations

The Krever Report was tabled in the House of Commons on 26 November 1997. The Krever inquiry recommended the creation of Héma-Québec for Quebec and Canadian Blood Services for rest of the Canada, two agencies which would operate at arms-length from the federal government. It also made recommendations regarding compensation for persons who had received contaminated blood.

See also

Bibliography

André Picard (1995). The gift of death: confronting Canada's tainted-blood tragedy. Toronto: HarperCollins. ISBN 0-00-255415-1.

External links

  • Final report of the Commission
  • Canadian Blood Services FAQ
  • Thesis on Canada's blood system governance
  • CBC Digital Archives - Canada's Tainted Blood Disaster
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