MP Matt Hancock addressed a mostly empty House of Commons this afternoon, with a brief COVID19 update. The Health Secretary claimed to those in attendance “We are winning”.
Hancock briefed ministers on the recent ‘excess death’ data released by the ONS saying that “levels of excess deaths are lower than any time during the pandemic”. Hancock justified the ‘still higher than usual’ excess deaths as not being a problem by comparing them to the excess deaths ONS would expect to see during Winter.
The health minister failed to mention the ONS report that 62,000 total ‘excess deaths’ have occurred in the UK since the COVID-19 Pandemic began.
Matt Hancock also announced that “test and trace was live” and that the country (England) ‘has the capacity to test anyone if they display symptoms of Coronavirus’. Shadow health minister Johnathan Ashworth asked Hancock about the recent lack of data on how many people are being tested, but got no answers.
The health minister spoke briefly about the the recent review into the disproportionanate amount of Coronavirus cases within BAME communities, telling ministers that being age and gender being the biggest risks. When talking about the disproportionate amount of NHS workers from BAME communities, Hancock stated “those working in hospitals are not more likely to catch COVID-19”.