Select Committee on Deregulation and Regulatory Reform Ninth Report


Letter from the Clerk of the Committee to the Department for Work and Pensions


The Deregulation and Regulatory Reform Committee considered the above proposal for the first time at its meeting earlier today. I have been instructed to ask for the following further information.

Firstly, the explanatory statement which accompanied the proposal did not explain, as it is required to do under s6(2)(g) of the Regulatory Reform Act, why the provisions of the Order relating to 'transitional claims' are being designated as subordinate provisions. The Committee would be grateful for an explanation of why they are being so designated.

Secondly, it would greatly assist the Committee in its consideration of the proposed Order if you were able to list those diseases vaccinations against which fall within the scope of the Vaccine Damage Payments Scheme; and if you would explain the circumstances in which a disease would be considered for addition to the list.

Finally, the Committee's legal advisers have scrutinised the proposed Order, and have made some suggestions for improvements to the drafting. It seems appropriate to add references in paragraphs (e) and (f) of the recital to the reports of the Parliamentary committees. More substantially, the expression "six years from the date of the vaccination" seems to create uncertainty as to whether the date of the vaccination is included or excluded in calculating that period. The Explanatory Note uses the word "after", which suggests that the date of the vaccination is intended to be excluded. We note that the Act currently avoids this uncertainty and suggest that the order is revised to avoid it.

22 January 2002

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