Yesterday, the Prime Minister confirmed that an independent public inquiry into the handling of the pandemic will begin in Spring 2022 - looking at the events of the last year to identify key issues for the future.
The Government have always said that we must examine our pandemic response rigorously and candidly, learning every possible lesson for the future. That is why the Prime Minister has announced that the Government will establish an independent public inquiry on a statutory basis, with full powers under the Inquiries Act of 2005.
In establishing the Inquiry, the Government will work closely with the devolved administrations, as we have done throughout our pandemic response, and the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster has already spoken to the First Ministers of Scotland and Wales, and the First and Deputy First Ministers of Northern Ireland to begin those conversations.
To view the Prime Minister’s full statement to the House of Commons, please visit: https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/pm-house-of-commons-statement-on-covid-12-may-2021.
We have administered a total of 54 million vaccine doses across the UK, with over 35.7 million people across the UK now having received their first dose and over 18.4 million people having received their second dose. We're making great strides in protecting our country from this virus thanks to the hard work of the NHS staff, volunteers and the British public
We are now asking people aged 38 and over and people who'll turn 38 before 1 July 2021 to come forward and get their jab. To book or manage your coronavirus vaccination, please visit: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus-vaccination/book-coronavirus-vaccination/.
Findings from the latest COVID-19 REACT-1 study have also been published today. Over 127,000 volunteers have been tested in England between 15 April and 3 May 2021 as part of one of the most significant COVID-19 studies in the world. Findings from Imperial College London and Ipsos MORI show infections have halved since the last REACT-1 study in March, with only 1 in 1,000 people infected. Data suggest the vaccination rollout continues to impact positively on prevalence, but new variants remain a threat.
For more information on the main findings from the eleventh round of the REACT study, please visit: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/findings-from-latest-covid-19-react-1-study-published.
The NHS Test and Trace has tested 30.2 million individuals at least once since its launch and has reached 10,146,934 people. 90% of identified close contacts who provided contact details have also been reached. To view the weekly statistics for NHS Test and Trace, please visit: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/weekly-statistics-for-nhs-test-and-trace-england-29-april-to-5-may-2021.