Shockingly poor government planning left health and care staff vulnerable to the virus

Ministers reacted too slowly when buying protective kit

surgical mask and rubber gloves


Responding to a National Audit Office report issued today (Wednesday) into the government’s attempts to source personal protective equipment as the first Covid wave struck, UNISON assistant general secretary Christina McAnea said:

“It’s unforgivable that shockingly poor government planning left care and health staff to fight Covid-19 without the safety kit to protect themselves. They were left exposed and vulnerable to the virus.

“Ministers made the wrong decisions and reacted too slowly to the unfolding tragedy. The lack of foresight to properly prepare for the pandemic undoubtedly cost lives, as well as billions of pounds of public money.

“The government needs to be held to account to ensure such a monumental failure of our health and care services never happens again.”

Notes to editors: 
– UNISON is the UK’s largest union, with more than 1.3 million members providing public services in education, local government, the NHS, police service and energy. They are employed in the public, voluntary and private sectors.

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