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The Story Of Thalidomide Survivor Trish Jackson

The Australian government is making a long-awaited formal apology to the victims and survivors of the drug, Thalidomide.

In the fifties and sixties, pregnant women were given Thalidomide to ease nausea.

What they didn’t know however was later in the sixties, it was revealed the drug was causing birth defects in the babies, which included limb and facial deformities and internal organ damage.

Listen to today’s episode of The Briefing:

Tens of thousands of babies were effected, many of which lost their life to the damages caused by the drug.

In this episode of The Briefing, Katrina Blowers is joined by a survivor of Thalidomide, Trish Jackson, to hear her story and what the apology means to her and other victims and survivors.

It only took one tablet taken by Trish’s mother to cause life-changing defects.

“She only took one tablet to say, so what it did to me, I was born with little arms. I’ve got three fingers out of each shoulder virtually and I had a lot of heart and lung complications,” she said.

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“So, I’ve had a lot of open-heart surgeries all my life, but I’m still here still fighting, but it’s getting harder to fight. And how to put on a smile every day.”

Trish says that while the apology won’t change anything that’s happened, it will give some recognition.

“The apology, it won’t change anything. It won’t suddenly make my arms grow, or I’ll suddenly be out of pain for my life,” she said.

“But it’s recognition I think that they, the government, did wrong and they need to learn that their decisions in parliament affect everybody’s lives.”

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