Law and religion round-up – 17th October

COVID-19: a critical analysis

The House of Commons Health and Social Care and Science and Technology Committees have published a highly critical report on the UK Government’s handling of the pandemic. The opening paragraph of the Executive Summary reads as follows:

“During the first three months of the covid pandemic, the UK followed the wrong policy in its use of non-pharmaceutical interventions. When the UK moved from the ‘contain’ to ‘delay’ stage, there was a policy of seeking to only moderate the speed of infection through the population—flattening the curve—rather than seeking to arrest its spread. The policy was pursued until 23 March because of the official scientific advice the Government received, not in spite of it. Questions remain about whether the containment phase was pursued aggressively enough—we believe it could have been pursued for longer. During this period Government policy did not deviate from the scientific advice it received in any material respect. The fact that the UK approach reflected a consensus between official scientific advisers and the Government indicates a degree of groupthink that was present at the time which meant we were not as open to approaches being taken elsewhere—such as earlier lockdowns, border controls and effective test and trace—as we should have been.”

There is a helpful summary on the BBC website, here.

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