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SEK 10m compensation limit for narcolepsy sufferers

Updated torsdag 12 maj 2016 kl 16.44
Published torsdag 12 maj 2016 kl 11.52
Christopher: Not even close to enough
(5:20 min)
Bertil Ericson / TT
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Photo: Bertil Ericson / TT
Christopher Tyvi is one of those who contracted narcolepsy after having the swine-flu injection.
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Christopher Tyvi is one of those who contracted narcolepsy after having the swine-flu injection. Photo: Christopher Tyvi

Parliament has voted on the compensation for those who contracted narcolepsy after receiving vaccinations for the swine flu in 2009. The maximum amount was set to SEK 10 million.

The proposal that was passed today makes a maximum of SEK 10 million available to people who contracted narcolepsy. This money is meant to compensate for a salary.

News agency TT reported that the number of people who will be able to access the money is still unclear because applications are still being made. There have been 475 so far. Of those 311 have been approved.

Some are questioning the need or fairness in setting a maximum amount at all. One of those who contracted narcolepsy following the flu jab is 24-year-old Christopher Tyvi. He is only capable of working part-time as a result of his illness, and in his opinion, SEK 10 million does not even come close to covering the financial losses.

”It’s an outrage. It’s not going to be enough for anyone,” Tyvi told Radio Sweden. ”In ten years, am I going to be able to work at all? Am I going to be a pensioner before I’m forty?”

Tyvi would like to see continuous, life-long compensation for himself and the others affected. He also believes a public apology is in place.

”You need to take responsibility for something like this. We were healthy, young individuals who were encouraged to take this vaccine. Now we’re stuck here with some disease that we’ll never get rid of,” he said.

Norway and Finland have similar schemes to compensate people who received the vaccination Pandemrix, reports Swedish Radio news. In Norway the level of compensation can depend on how seriously affected the person is by the condition. In Finland a patient insurance can be supplemented by the government according to the needs of the person affected.

Margareta Eriksson, who chairs a narcolepsy association in Sweden, told Swedish Radio that she believes the country should have another system of compensation for those affected.

This is a vaccine that you take to protect our society," she said. "These were totally healthy individuals who have suffered a lifelong neurological disease because of a vaccine. And it's totally unacceptable that they should pay with their lives for it."

Our journalism is based on credibility and impartiality. Swedish Radio is independent and not affiliated to any political, religious, financial, public or private interests.
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