The Cumberlege Report and the Effects of Primodos

The history of Primodos

In 1958, an oral hormone pregnancy test, called Primodos, was prescribed as the most convenient method for pregnancy testing. Thousands of women were prescribed the drug throughout the 1960s and 1970s, but in 1967, a study was produced by Dr Isabel Gal which identified a link between oral hormone pregnancy tests, such as Primodos, and babies who were born with congenital abnormalities. Warnings about the drug were issued in 1975 and 1977, yet the product was not removed from the market until 1978. Today, there is yet more evidence to highlight the life changing effects of Primodos, including devastating congenital abnormalities, stillbirths and miscarriages.Following Primodos' removal from the market in 1978, an association, known as the Association for Children Damaged by Hormone Pregnancy Tests (ACDHPT), was set up to support the hundreds of family members who had been impacted by the devastating effects of the drug. Today, the ACDHPT campaign for the rights of those who have suffered and aim to expose the truth behind any possible Regulatory or Manufacturer failings, as well as working to relieve the families of any guilt brought about by the circumstance of the drug, which they have carried for decades.

The Cumberlege Report

In July 2020, Baroness Cumberlege published an independent report to review three medical concerns being, Primodos, Sodium Valporate and Vaginal Mesh. This report confirmed the link between Primodos and the devastating outcomes seen by many families and concluded that Primodos should have been removed from the market in 1967, 11 years before it did in fact take place. As part of the report, Baroness Cumberlege made a number of recommendations, including recommendations to establish both an independent redress agency and redress scheme. Unfortunately, these recommendations were not accepted by the government, and are still yet to be actioned.In July 2020, following the huge impact of the Cumberlege Report, Matt Hancock, as Health Secretary, formally apologised on behalf of “the NHS and the entire health service” for the devastating outcomes faced, noting that the families “voices had now been heard”. Although a step forward for those involved, the affected families now strive for real redress.

The fight for justice

The families have reached out to both the Regulators and Manufacturers offering mediation to discuss and resolve the issues. This process would provide affected families with an opportunity to have their say and highlight the significance of Primodos on their lives. Unfortunately, the offer of mediation has been declined by the Regulators and Manufacturers, leaving the families to continue to fight.As such, the fight for justice continues, and the ACDHPT welcome any further affected families to join their cause, as each new member brings further attention and support from MPs. At present, the Association is working with its team of legal and scientific experts and researchers to uncover the evidence which it hopes will ensure that manufacturers, regulators and the government meet their legal and moral duty to recognise and compensate the victim and their families.If you would like to help the Association with its fight for justice, please follow the link below to reach the crowd funding page which has been set up to fund the gathering of information to support the case: ACDHPT donations >If you wish to read further information, please visit the ACDHPT website:


The content of this page is a summary of the law in force at the date of publication and is not exhaustive, nor does it contain definitive advice. Specialist legal advice should be sought in relation to any queries that may arise.

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