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Covid inquiry broadens scope to include children

The scope of the UK public inquiry into the handling of the Covid pandemic has widened to include a focus on children.

When the draft terms were published in March, there was criticism that they failed to even mention the impact on children and young people. But after a public consultation, the final terms have been published and now incorporate the effect on the health, wellbeing and education of children.

The final terms of reference were decided following a four-week public consultation on the draft terms.

As well as expanding the terms to include the impact on the health, wellbeing and education of children and young people, the inquiry will also look at the wider mental health impact across the population.

The focus on inequalities will also be strengthened, the inquiry said, so that the unequal impact on different sections of society will be considered at all stages.

Alongside these issues, the UK-wide inquiry will also look at the following issues which were included originally:

  • the UK's preparedness for the pandemic
  • the use of lockdowns and other "non-pharmaceutical" interventions, such as social distancing and the use of face coverings
  • the management of the pandemic in hospitals and care homes
  • the procurement and provision of equipment like personal protective equipment and ventilators
  • support for businesses and jobs, including the furlough scheme, as well as benefits and sick pay.

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Source: BBC News, 12 May 2022


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