Internal Assessments of What Went Wrong During Coronavirus Pandemic

Waiting for an internal review by Department of Health and Social Care of their handling of this request.

Louise McGettrick

Dear Department of Health and Social Care,

I previously made a request in 2021 that was denied due to the demands the ongoing pandemic was placing on you. I would like to resubmit that request now, especially in light of the repeated mantra from conservative politicians that "We Got The Big Calls Right" -

I understand via the media that you have conducted internal assessments of what went wrong [during the coronavirus pandemic] to improve best practice - link here:

I believe that such information belongs in the public domain, and I request that you make the assessments publicly accessible. This pandemic is ongoing, and isn’t some abstract event but a tragedy experienced at a community level, measured in personal bereavements and ongoing ill health. If conclusions have been drawn people deserve the ability to understand how policies or decisions might have impacted them, and to be reassured that the conclusions made are being put into practice.

Yours faithfully,

Louise McGettrick

Yours faithfully,

Louise McGettrick

Department of Health and Social Care

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Department of Health and Social Care

1 Attachment

Dear Ms McGettrick,

Please find attached the Department of Health and Social Care's response
to your FOI request (our ref: FOI-1406114) and we apologise for the delay
in replying.

Yours sincerely, 

Freedom of Information Team
Department of Health and Social Care

show quoted sections

Louise McGettrick

Dear Department of Health and Social Care,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Department of Health and Social Care's handling of my FOI request 'Internal Assessments of What Went Wrong During Coronavirus Pandemic'.

This government has stated, in press releases and in parliament, that they "got the big calls right" on Covid. To then deny public access to reports that assess any negative impacts of any calls they made leaves the public unable to ascertain the veracity of these claims. I cannot see how it is a tenable position to publicly claim success while suppressing any evidence of fault.

To deny the public access to these reports also denies the public the ability to know whether necessary changes have been made to the public health policy or infrastructure for future outbreaks. This is increasingly important in light of simultaneous outbreaks of polio and monkeypox within the UK, and the circulation of other zoonotic diseases such as bird flu.

At the time of writing, there have been 186,000 UK deaths attributed to Covid. It is overwhelmingly in the public interest to understand how these deaths occurred, how they may have been prevented, and to be able to recognise what steps have, or have not, been taken in response to analysis of the pandemic.

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address:

Yours faithfully,

Louise McGettrick