Asbestos Advice Helpline Backs Asbestos Law

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Asbestos Advice Helpline, a leading organisation to assist those affected by Asbestos related diseases, has today announced that they fully back the newly announced Welsh law bid to recover NHS expenses from the insurers of those responsible for exposure to asbestos.

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Asbestos Advice Helpline has today announced that they are in full support of the newly announced Welsh law bid to recover expenses in order to help sufferers of asbestos related diseases.

The bill proposes letting the NHS seek compensation from the insurers and companies who caused the exposure in asbestos related disease sufferers. This would be similar to the way that sufferers of asbestos related diseases can claim on their own, but the money would go into the NHS to help fund treatment and care for sufferers of asbestos exposure.

The proposed bill has an explanatory memorandum which states:

“The Bill’s aim is to enable the Welsh Ministers to recover from a compensator (being a person by or on behalf of whom a compensation payment is made to or in respect of a victim of asbestos related disease), certain costs incurred by the NHS in Wales in providing care and treatment to the victim of asbestos related disease.”

The Recovery of Medical Costs for Asbestos Disease (Wales) Bill has been opened to consultation after being brought forward by the Pontypridd Assembly Member Mick Antoniw. The bills aim is to gain compensation to be paid into NHS trusts to help with the payment of treatments caused by asbestos related industrial diseases and help take the strain off the already stretched NHS. Wales has a high number of asbestos related disease victims and the number of those diagnosed is set to continue for some time due to the long incubation period for diseases such as asbestosis, mesothelioma and lung cancer.

Currently, sufferers of asbestos related diseases such as mesothelioma, asbestosis and asbestos related lung cancer can claim compensation through Asbestos Advice Helpline from the companies who were responsible for the exposure. If the bill were to go through, it could mean that the burden of asbestos related diseases would be eased for the NHS, with money helping fund treatment and research into the diseases. The claim for compensation to be paid to the NHS would be made after an individual has made a successful personal compensation claim, so would not reduce the amount of a successful claim for an asbestos related disease.

Government statistics show that 4,500 people a year die from asbestos related diseases, so the addition of funding for the NHS would help sufferers get the treatment they need. It would also help the existing funding be put to different uses, thus helping everyone who uses the NHS.

If you have been affected by asbestos related diseases and feel you may be entitled to make a claim against those responsible; please do not hesitate to contact Asbestos Advice Helpline on 0800 884 0300 or through their website here.

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Ian Harbridge
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