1Xtra DJ reveals grandad was victim

Home UK News 1Xtra DJ reveals grandad was victim
1Xtra DJ reveals grandad was victim

Calum Leslie,Riyah Collins

Kaylee Golding Kaylee Golding with her grandad, GrahamKaylee Golding

Kaylee’s grandad was infected with hepatitis in the 1970s during treatment for his haemophilia

1Xtra DJ Kaylee Golding has revealed that her grandad was among the victims of the infected blood scandal.

A public inquiry published on Monday found decades of failure and denial meant thousands of patients had been affected after being given contaminated blood.

Among them was Graham, who died from illnesses linked to these treatments when Kaylee was 17.

“To have some kind of apology, some kind of closure, is what people have been waiting such a long time for,” she tells BBC Newsbeat.

“It’s taken way too long but I’m thankful that there’s something.”

The infected blood scandal, which dates back to the 1970s, 80s and 90s, has been called the biggest treatment disaster in the history of the NHS.

In the 1970s, the UK was struggling to meet the demand for blood-clotting treatments, so imported supplies from the US.

But much of the blood was bought from high-risk donors such as prison inmates and drug-users.

More than 30,000 people were infected with diseases like HIV and hepatitis C. Almost 3,000 of them are thought to have died.

People who had blood transfusions after childbirth, surgery and other treatments were affected.

As were people like Kaylee’s grandad, who had severe haemophilia – a rare condition where your blood doesn’t clot properly.

Kaylee Golding Kaylee Golding as a baby with her grandad, Graham.Kaylee Golding

Kaylee says the stigma around hepatitis and HIV meant her grandad’s condition was “a big secret”

“The treatment for that was blood transfusions,” says Kaylee, who presents the afternoon show on 1Xtra on weekdays.

Because the blood Graham was given was contaminated, by 1974 he was diagnosed with hepatitis B and hepatitis C, serious liver infections which eventually caused his death.

“It’s just sad to know that he knew, eventually, it was gonna lead to him passing,” says Kaylee.

“My grandad’s not going to be here to see me have kids or for when I get married.

“His life was cut short.”

But Kaylee is grateful she got a chance to grow up with her grandad, after reading stories of some victims who died when they were children.

She remembers him as “an absolute bundle of joy” and a joker.

“That’s probably why I’m so loud and bubbly,” she says. “I get it from him.”

Growing up, Kaylee, from Birmingham, says there was a lot of stigma around people like her grandad living with hepatitis and HIV.

“It was like a big secret,” she says. “You wouldn’t speak about it.

“It’s a big thing in the news at the moment but this has always been something in our life.

“And I think by the time I was a teenager, my family was a little bit more open about it.”

The inquiry report also found that what happened to people like Graham was “not an accident”.

Its author, Sir Brian Langstaff, said: “The infections happened because those in authority – doctors, the blood services and successive governments – did not put patient safety first.”

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has apologised for the scandal and has pledged that victims will receive compensation.

For Kaylee, the most important thing is closure.

“I miss him so much,” she says. “He was just so funny, always just made me laugh.

“Even though my grandad didn’t get it, I’m so happy and blessed that my mom and my aunties have that closure because it was their dad.”

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