David Cameron
Nearly 3,000 people in Scotland contracted hepatitis C and up to 60 HIV from infected blood transfusions.Getty Images

Prime Minister David Cameron has apologized to victims of the contaminated blood scandal, in what is being regarded as one of the biggest treatment failures in the history of the NHS.

The PM's apology comes after Lord Penrose's report recommended all people in Scotland who had blood transfusions in the 1970s and 1980s and before 1991 to be tested for Hepatitis C.

Several thousand people reportedly contracted Hepatitis C or HIV after being given infected blood transfusions.

"To each and every one of those people I would like to say sorry on behalf of the Government for something that should not have happened," said Cameron.

"While it will be for the next government to take account of these findings, it is right that we use this moment to recognise the pain and the suffering experienced by people as a result of this tragedy.

"It is difficult to imagine the feelings of unfairness that people must feel at being infected with hepatitis C and HIV as a result of a totally unrelated treatment within the NHS."

Cameron further paid tribute to Lord Penrose, who was unable to present his findings from the public inquiry due to being seriously ill.

"For people infected by HIV/Aids and/or hepatitis C, the impact on their lives and the lives of their loved ones has often been devastating," read a statement from Penrose.

"I would also comment on the often forgotten suffering of clinical staff, who discovered that the treatments they thought were beneficial to patients actually caused them to become infected with life-threatening conditions.

"They too have been affected, especially when accused of knowing or deliberate attempts to harm patients."

Victims of the scandal have called the inquiry a "whitewash" after it concluded that Scottish authorities worked at their best and could only do so much to prevent the spread of infection.

The infected blood samples were blamed on imported blood supplies and those collected in prisons.

Nearly 3,000 people in Scotland contracted hepatitis C and up to 60 HIV from infected blood transfusions, according to the report.