HL Deb 03 December 2001 vol 629 c99WA
The Countess of Mar

asked Her Majesty's Government:

What are the rules relating to claims for disability benefits arising from vaccine damage; and under what circumstances the rules restrict consideration of claims to damage from polio vaccine only. [HL1417]

Baroness Hollis of Heigham

People who have been disabled as a result of vaccine damage can claim disability benefits in the same way as any other disabled person, and will receive payment as long as they satisfy the conditions for payment of the relevant benefits.

In addition to disability benefits, the Vaccine Damage Payments Act 1979 provides for a single, tax-free payment of £100,000 for those whom the decision maker, on behalf of the Secretary of State, is satisfied are severely mentally and/or physically disabled as a result of vaccination against one of a group of specified diseases. For the purposes of the scheme a person is severely disabled if he or she suffers disablement to the extent of 80 per cent or more. Claimants are asked to give details of all the vaccinations they have been given, and on the basis of medical evidence it will be considered whether the person is severely disabled as a result of vaccination against any of the specified diseases. Except in the case of vaccination against poliomyelitis, meningitis C or rubella, the vaccination must have been carried out either at a time when the person to whom it was given was under the age of 18 or at the time of an outbreak of the disease against which the vaccination was given.