Doctors and campaigners have launched a High Court challenge against the government over its refusal to hold a public inquiry into PPE shortages.
The claim lodged by the Doctors’ Association UK, the charity Hourglass, and the legal pressure group Good Law Project argues that the government’s failure to procure and distribute sufficient PPE, which may have contributed to the deaths or serious illnesses of NHS and care home staff and patients, was unlawful.
Rinesh Parmar, chairman of the Doctors’ Association UK, said: “We have seen over the last few weeks that the UK has one of the highest death rates from Covid-19 in the world. Health and social care workers rose to the challenge, returned to the front line from retirement and pulled out all the stops to save lives. Some had no PPE, others had inadequate, out-of-date perishing supplies. Alongside caring for patients, we’ve cared for colleagues and also faced the sad and grim reality of losing colleagues, who themselves were caring for patients.
“As we recover from the first wave of Covid-19 there is a real and credible possibility that we will face a second wave in the coming months or into the winter. Now is the time to learn key lessons to enable us to avoid future pitfalls, protect the front line and ultimately save lives.”
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