Lord Mendelsohn

Labour - Life peer

International Relations and Defence Committee
1st Jul 2019 - 11th Nov 2021
Shadow Spokesperson (Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
14th Jul 2016 - 25th Jan 2018
Shadow Spokesperson (International Trade)
1st Jul 2016 - 25th Jan 2018
Shadow Spokesperson (Business, Innovation and Skills)
28th May 2015 - 14th Jul 2016


There are no upcoming events identified
Division Votes
Thursday 10th June 2021
Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development etc.) (England) (Amendment) Order 2021
voted Aye - in line with the party majority
One of 122 Labour Aye votes vs 0 Labour No votes
Tally: Ayes - 260 Noes - 229
Speeches
Wednesday 28th April 2021
Post Office Court of Appeal Judgment
My Lords, as a businessman, I am embarrassed that our culture of corporate governance and a failure of corporate leadership …
Written Answers
Monday 17th January 2022
Cancer: Magnetic Resonance Imagers
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many multi-parametric magnetic resonance imaging scans are in use in each Cancer Alliance.
Early Day Motions
None available
Bills
Tuesday 21st January 2020
Small Business Commissioner and Late Payments etc Bill [HL] 2019-21
A bill to make provision to amend the statutory limits for payment of invoices; make provision for a statutory time …
Tweets
None available
MP Financial Interests
None available

Division Voting information

During the current Parliamentary Session, Lord Mendelsohn has voted in 118 divisions, and 1 time against the majority of their Party.

23 Jun 2020 - Corporate Insolvency and Governance Bill - View Vote Context
Lord Mendelsohn voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 10 Labour Aye votes vs 104 Labour No votes
Tally: Ayes - 155 Noes - 326
View All Lord Mendelsohn Division Votes

Debates during the 2019 Parliament

Speeches made during Parliamentary debates are recorded in Hansard. For ease of browsing we have grouped debates into individual, departmental and legislative categories.

Sparring Partners
Lord Callanan (Conservative)
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
(3 debate interactions)
Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon (Conservative)
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
(2 debate interactions)
Lord Parkinson of Whitley Bay (Conservative)
Lord in Waiting (HM Household) (Whip)
(2 debate interactions)
View All Sparring Partners
View all Lord Mendelsohn's debates

Commons initiatives

These initiatives were driven by Lord Mendelsohn, and are more likely to reflect personal policy preferences.

MPs who are act as Ministers or Shadow Ministers are generally restricted from performing Commons initiatives other than Urgent Questions.


Lord Mendelsohn has not been granted any Urgent Questions

Lord Mendelsohn has not been granted any Adjournment Debates

1 Bill introduced by Lord Mendelsohn


A bill to make provision to amend the statutory limits for payment of invoices; make provision for a statutory time limit for resolving payment disputes; amend interest for late payments and penalties for persistent late payments and non-compliance; prohibit specified payment practices, on-boarding and pay-to-stay; require payments becoming due under public sector construction projects to be held in project bank accounts; amend the remit, role and powers of the Small Business Commissioner in regard to late payments; provide for a duty on auditors to publish late payment data; and for connected purposes


Last Event - 1st Reading (Lords)
Tuesday 21st January 2020
(Read Debate)

Lord Mendelsohn has not co-sponsored any Bills in the current parliamentary sitting


201 Written Questions in the current parliament

(View all written questions)
Written Questions can be tabled by MPs and Lords to request specific information information on the work, policy and activities of a Government Department
15th Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many people who are immunocompromised or immunosuppressed have died due to COVID-19 in England since 2 September.

The information requested falls under the remit of the UK Statistics Authority. I have, therefore, asked the Authority to respond.

Professor Sir Ian Diamond | National Statistician

The Lord Mendelsohn

House of Lords

London

SW1A 0PW

22 November 2021

Dear Lord Mendelsohn,

As National Statistician and Chief Executive of the UK Statistics Authority, I am responding to your Parliamentary Question asking how many people who are immunocompromised or immunosuppressed have died due to COVID-19 in England since 2 September (HL4024).

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) publishes statistics on deaths registered in England and Wales. Mortality statistics are compiled from information supplied when deaths are certified and registered as part of civil registration. National Records for Scotland (1) and the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (2) are responsible for publishing statistics on deaths registered in Scotland and Northern Ireland respectively.

The mortality statistics published by the ONS are based on the causes of death provided by the certifying doctor (or in some cases coroner). The death certificate lists only those health conditions or circumstances which led directly to the death or otherwise contributed to it but does not include any other health conditions the deceased suffered from if the certifier did not consider them relevant to the death. Immunosuppression can arise directly from a diagnosed health condition or from the side-effects of treatment, and there is no definitive list of causes of death linked to immunosuppression. Therefore, we are able to provide the number of deaths due to COVID-19 where certain health conditions commonly associated with immunosuppression were also mentioned on the death certificate, but this does not provide a comprehensive count of all deaths due to COVID-19 where immunosuppression might have been involved.

Table 1 shows the number of deaths registered due to COVID-19, where diseases of the blood and blood-forming organs and certain disorders involving the immune mechanism were mentioned on the death certificate, in England and Wales between 2 September to 5 November 2021.

Yours sincerely,

Professor Sir Ian Diamond

Table 1: Number (3) of deaths (4) registered (5) due to COVID-19 where diseases (6) of the blood and blood-forming organs and certain disorders involving the immune mechanism (7) were mentioned on the death certificate, England and Wales, 2 September to 5 November 2021 (8).

Due to COVID-19

Of which, diseases of the blood and blood-forming organs and certain disorders involving the immune mechanism mentioned


6,686

114

Source: Office for National Statistics


(1) https://www.nrscotland.gov.uk/

(2) https://www.nisra.gov.uk/

(3) Figures are provisional.

(4) Deaths for England and Wales exclude non-residents.

(5) Based on date a death was registered rather than occurred.

(6) The International Classification of Diseases, Tenth Edition (ICD-10) definitions are as follows: coronavirus (COVID-19) (U.071, U.072, U.099, U.109) and Diseases of the blood and blood-forming organs and certain disorders involving the immune mechanism (D50 to D89).

(7) Deaths where diseases of the blood and blood-forming organs and certain disorders involving the immune mechanism were mentioned includes deaths that have these causes mentioned on the death certificate but not as the underlying cause of death.

(8) These figures are calculated using the most up-to-date data we have available to get the most accurate estimates.

Lord True
Minister of State (Cabinet Office)
19th Jul 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government why National Health Service Trusts and English Local Authority Councils are allowed to be signatories to the Prompt Payment Code given the reports about failures to pay promptly and make the relevant disclosures under section 113(7) of the Public Contract Regulations 2015.

The Office of the Small Business Commissioner administers the Prompt Payment Code (the Code) on behalf of BEIS. The Office of the Small Business Commissioner is an independent public body set up by Government under the Enterprise Act 2016. The Code is a voluntary code of practice which any private or public sector organisation may sign up to. If an organisation chooses to sign up to the Code, they must demonstrate they meet the Code standards.

However, public sector organisations in scope of Reg 113 of the PCRs 2015 are required to meet payment standards as set out in legislation. This requires contracting authorities to include contractual provisions to make payments due to a contractor no later than 30 days from the point it is declared valid and undisputed, and for that verification to take place in a timely fashion and without undue delay.

Lord True
Minister of State (Cabinet Office)
15th Jul 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the effectiveness of section 113(7) of the Public Contract Regulations 2015; and what plans they have, if any, to amend that legislation to tackle issues relating to reporting and non-compliance.

Section 113(7) of the Public Contracts Regulations 2015 requires contracting authorities to publish their performance against the 30 day obligation to pay their suppliers within 30 days, together with details of interest payable/paid where they fail to do so. It does not place any obligations or responsibilities upon external auditors in the event of a reporting failure.

The Cabinet Office has included proposals in its Green Paper on Procurement Rules Reform to strengthen the reporting requirements of Section 113(7).

The proposals include legislating to align public and private sector reporting requirements and publishing public sector payment performance in a single location which will allow greater scrutiny and challenge of public sector payment performance.

The outcome of the consultation will be published in due course.

Lord True
Minister of State (Cabinet Office)
15th Jul 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what reporting obligations and responsibilities are placed on external auditors by section 113(7) of the Public Contract Regulations 2015 in the event of a reporting failure.

Section 113(7) of the Public Contracts Regulations 2015 requires contracting authorities to publish their performance against the 30 day obligation to pay their suppliers within 30 days, together with details of interest payable/paid where they fail to do so. It does not place any obligations or responsibilities upon external auditors in the event of a reporting failure.

The Cabinet Office has included proposals in its Green Paper on Procurement Rules Reform to strengthen the reporting requirements of Section 113(7).

The proposals include legislating to align public and private sector reporting requirements and publishing public sector payment performance in a single location which will allow greater scrutiny and challenge of public sector payment performance.

The outcome of the consultation will be published in due course.

Lord True
Minister of State (Cabinet Office)
14th May 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to make additional resources available to the National Cyber Security Centre to address any rise in cybercrime linked to COVID-19; and, if so, what those resources will be.

The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) is deploying its full range of capabilities in tackling the cyber threat during the Covid-19 crisis.

The NCSC, National Crime Agency and partners in the UK and overseas are working together to tackle cyber threats, publishing guidance and identifying and removing malicious sites. This includes working closely with the NHS to keep their systems and the healthcare sector safe as we see a greater demand on their services during this period. We are able to draw upon these resources, because of the implementation of the 2016 National Cyber Security Strategy.

The Covid-19 crisis means that the UK is now more reliant on home working and online services than ever before. In April, the NCSC, alongside Cabinet Office, DCMS and Home Office relaunched the Cyber Aware campaign, which advises the public of the simple steps they can take to protect themselves online.

We recognise the importance of not losing momentum on our response to cyber security and of continuing to build on the capabilities we have developed; this will be considered as part of the Government's next Spending Review.

Lord True
Minister of State (Cabinet Office)
25th Feb 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether it remains their policy that any supplier who bids for a government contract worth more than £5 million per annum must demonstrate that they pay 95 per cent of invoices within 60 days or be excluded from delivering the contract; and if so, how many such bidders have been excluded from delivering contracts on those grounds.

From September 2019, any supplier who bids for a Government contract above £5m per annum will be expected to pay 95% of invoices in 60 days across all their business. Any supplier who is unable to demonstrate a fair and responsible approach to the payment of their supply chain may be excluded from bidding.

A small number of suppliers have been excluded to date for not achieving the expected standards. However, our aim is to drive improvement in performance and ensure subcontractors are paid promptly.

Lord True
Minister of State (Cabinet Office)
11th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether any (1) legal, or (2) contractual, impediment exists that would stop them from exercising their rights as shareholder to replace the current Board of the Post Office.

The Articles of Association of Post Office Limited entitle my Rt. Hon. Friend the Secretary of State to remove either the Post Office Limited’s directors or the chair of the company by notice in writing, but he must act reasonably in doing so and give reasons for such a decision.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
9th Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government which projects are funded by UK Research and Innovation to support research on vaccine responses in groups of immune-supressed individuals; and, in each case, what is (1) the level of funding, and (2) the project timetable.

UKRI is currently funding one study of direct relevance to these areas. UKRI has allocated an initial £1.8 million to the OCTAVE study, led by Professor Iain McInnes, University of Glasgow, for a twelve-month period, and is considering a case for additional funding beyond this. OCTAVE is supporting research on vaccine responses in groups of immune-supressed individuals, including those with inflammatory disorders, high risk cancer patient groups, and patients with severe kidney and liver disease. Cancer patient groups include chronic lymphocytic leukaemia, myeloma, acute leukaemia, and bone marrow transplants. As the OCTAVE study is being managed as a single project it is not possible to give costs for the individual groups.

In addition, there are proposals on vaccine responses in high-risk clinical groups under consideration as part of the UKRI COVID-19 Agile call, with announcements to be made shortly. Furthermore, UKRI continues to accept applications for COVID-19 related research, including on this topic, through its active calls, which can be found on the UKRI website.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
9th Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government which research projects UK Research and Innovation are funding into vaccine responses for (1) individuals with inflammatory disorders, (2) high risk cancer patient groups, (3) patients with severe kidney and liver disease, and (4) other immune-suppressed individuals.

UKRI is currently funding one study of direct relevance to these areas. UKRI has allocated an initial £1.8 million to the OCTAVE study, led by Professor Iain McInnes, University of Glasgow, for a twelve-month period, and is considering a case for additional funding beyond this. OCTAVE is supporting research on vaccine responses in groups of immune-supressed individuals, including those with inflammatory disorders, high risk cancer patient groups, and patients with severe kidney and liver disease. Cancer patient groups include chronic lymphocytic leukaemia, myeloma, acute leukaemia, and bone marrow transplants. As the OCTAVE study is being managed as a single project it is not possible to give costs for the individual groups.

In addition, there are proposals on vaccine responses in high-risk clinical groups under consideration as part of the UKRI COVID-19 Agile call, with announcements to be made shortly. Furthermore, UKRI continues to accept applications for COVID-19 related research, including on this topic, through its active calls, which can be found on the UKRI website.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
20th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they will list all projects funded by UK Research and Innovation to support research on vaccine responses in groups of immune-supressed individuals; and, in each case, what is (1) the level of funding, and (2) the project timetable.

UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) is funding research on vaccine responses in groups of immune-supressed individuals as part of its support for the OCTAVE study in the National Core Studies (NCS) Immunity Programme. The NCS was established in October 2020, guided by an Oversight Committee, chaired by Sir Patrick Vallance (Government Chief Scientific Adviser), to increase research scale and ultimately maintain resilience against Covid-19.

The NCS Oversight Committee members are:

  • Professor Sir John Bell (Regius Chair of Medicine, University of Oxford)
  • Sir Jeremy Farrar (Director, Wellcome Trust)
  • Professor Sir Mike Ferguson (Regius Professor of Life Sciences, University of Dundee)
  • Professor Dame Anne Johnson (Professor of Infectious Disease Epidemiology, UCL)
  • Sir Harpal Kumar (President, GRAIL Europe)
  • Professor Dame Ottoline Leyser (CEO, UKRI)
  • Dr Lynda Stuart (Lead COVID-19 Discovery and Translational Vaccine Response Team, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation)
  • Professor Chris Whitty (Chief Medical Officer and Head of the National Institute of Health Research (NIHR))

Plus, representatives of the Devolved Administrations, NIHR and Health and Safety Executive.

Further expert insights are provided by an international panel comprising Peggy Hamburg (Chair of the Board of the American Association for the Advancement of Science), Gagandeep Kang (Professor, Division of Gastrointestinal Sciences, Christian Medical College Vellore) and Gabriel Leung (Dean of Medicine, Hong Kong University).

The OCTAVE study, led by Professor Iain McInnes, University of Glasgow, has a budget of c. £2.3 million, is designed to deliver in twelve months, and is supporting research on vaccine responses in groups of immune-supressed individuals, including those with inflammatory disorders, high risk cancer patient groups, and patients with severe kidney and liver disease. Cancer patient groups include chronic lymphocytic leukaemia, myeloma, acute leukaemia, and bone marrow transplants. In addition, there are proposals on vaccine responses in high-risk clinical groups under consideration by UKRI’s Medical Research Council (MRC) as part of the UKRI COVID-19 Agile call, including in haematological cancers. These submissions will be reviewed by the MRC’s Agile Panel, which draws on members of the MRC’s Research Boards and Panels, and if supported will be coordinated with the OCTAVE study.

The Government Office for Science, acting as the NCS secretariat, establishes the formal links between the NCS and the policymakers and delivery partners in government (including No 10, Cabinet Office, Department of Health and Social Care, Public Health England and devolved equivalents, and the Joint Biosecurity Centre), ensuring that study outputs support informed policy and operational responses.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
20th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government which scientific advisory committees made the evaluations of which projects UK Research and Innovation should fund to support research on vaccine responses in groups of immune-supressed individuals; and who are the members of each such committee.

UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) is funding research on vaccine responses in groups of immune-supressed individuals as part of its support for the OCTAVE study in the National Core Studies (NCS) Immunity Programme. The NCS was established in October 2020, guided by an Oversight Committee, chaired by Sir Patrick Vallance (Government Chief Scientific Adviser), to increase research scale and ultimately maintain resilience against Covid-19.

The NCS Oversight Committee members are:

  • Professor Sir John Bell (Regius Chair of Medicine, University of Oxford)
  • Sir Jeremy Farrar (Director, Wellcome Trust)
  • Professor Sir Mike Ferguson (Regius Professor of Life Sciences, University of Dundee)
  • Professor Dame Anne Johnson (Professor of Infectious Disease Epidemiology, UCL)
  • Sir Harpal Kumar (President, GRAIL Europe)
  • Professor Dame Ottoline Leyser (CEO, UKRI)
  • Dr Lynda Stuart (Lead COVID-19 Discovery and Translational Vaccine Response Team, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation)
  • Professor Chris Whitty (Chief Medical Officer and Head of the National Institute of Health Research (NIHR))

Plus, representatives of the Devolved Administrations, NIHR and Health and Safety Executive.

Further expert insights are provided by an international panel comprising Peggy Hamburg (Chair of the Board of the American Association for the Advancement of Science), Gagandeep Kang (Professor, Division of Gastrointestinal Sciences, Christian Medical College Vellore) and Gabriel Leung (Dean of Medicine, Hong Kong University).

The OCTAVE study, led by Professor Iain McInnes, University of Glasgow, has a budget of c. £2.3 million, is designed to deliver in twelve months, and is supporting research on vaccine responses in groups of immune-supressed individuals, including those with inflammatory disorders, high risk cancer patient groups, and patients with severe kidney and liver disease. Cancer patient groups include chronic lymphocytic leukaemia, myeloma, acute leukaemia, and bone marrow transplants. In addition, there are proposals on vaccine responses in high-risk clinical groups under consideration by UKRI’s Medical Research Council (MRC) as part of the UKRI COVID-19 Agile call, including in haematological cancers. These submissions will be reviewed by the MRC’s Agile Panel, which draws on members of the MRC’s Research Boards and Panels, and if supported will be coordinated with the OCTAVE study.

The Government Office for Science, acting as the NCS secretariat, establishes the formal links between the NCS and the policymakers and delivery partners in government (including No 10, Cabinet Office, Department of Health and Social Care, Public Health England and devolved equivalents, and the Joint Biosecurity Centre), ensuring that study outputs support informed policy and operational responses.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
20th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assurances they have received that the research supported by UK Research and Innovation on vaccine responses in groups of immune-supressed individuals is adequate to support advice on responses for all blood cancers; and whether they have consulted Blood Cancer UK on this matter.

UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) is funding research on vaccine responses in groups of immune-supressed individuals as part of its support for the OCTAVE study in the National Core Studies (NCS) Immunity Programme. The NCS was established in October 2020, guided by an Oversight Committee, chaired by Sir Patrick Vallance (Government Chief Scientific Adviser), to increase research scale and ultimately maintain resilience against Covid-19.

The NCS Oversight Committee members are:

  • Professor Sir John Bell (Regius Chair of Medicine, University of Oxford)
  • Sir Jeremy Farrar (Director, Wellcome Trust)
  • Professor Sir Mike Ferguson (Regius Professor of Life Sciences, University of Dundee)
  • Professor Dame Anne Johnson (Professor of Infectious Disease Epidemiology, UCL)
  • Sir Harpal Kumar (President, GRAIL Europe)
  • Professor Dame Ottoline Leyser (CEO, UKRI)
  • Dr Lynda Stuart (Lead COVID-19 Discovery and Translational Vaccine Response Team, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation)
  • Professor Chris Whitty (Chief Medical Officer and Head of the National Institute of Health Research (NIHR))

Plus, representatives of the Devolved Administrations, NIHR and Health and Safety Executive.

Further expert insights are provided by an international panel comprising Peggy Hamburg (Chair of the Board of the American Association for the Advancement of Science), Gagandeep Kang (Professor, Division of Gastrointestinal Sciences, Christian Medical College Vellore) and Gabriel Leung (Dean of Medicine, Hong Kong University).

The OCTAVE study, led by Professor Iain McInnes, University of Glasgow, has a budget of c. £2.3 million, is designed to deliver in twelve months, and is supporting research on vaccine responses in groups of immune-supressed individuals, including those with inflammatory disorders, high risk cancer patient groups, and patients with severe kidney and liver disease. Cancer patient groups include chronic lymphocytic leukaemia, myeloma, acute leukaemia, and bone marrow transplants. In addition, there are proposals on vaccine responses in high-risk clinical groups under consideration by UKRI’s Medical Research Council (MRC) as part of the UKRI COVID-19 Agile call, including in haematological cancers. These submissions will be reviewed by the MRC’s Agile Panel, which draws on members of the MRC’s Research Boards and Panels, and if supported will be coordinated with the OCTAVE study.

The Government Office for Science, acting as the NCS secretariat, establishes the formal links between the NCS and the policymakers and delivery partners in government (including No 10, Cabinet Office, Department of Health and Social Care, Public Health England and devolved equivalents, and the Joint Biosecurity Centre), ensuring that study outputs support informed policy and operational responses.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
20th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government which research projects UK Research and Innovation are funding into vaccine responses for (1) individuals with inflammatory disorders, (2) high risk cancer patient groups, (3) patients with severe kidney and liver disease, and (4) other immune-suppressed individuals.

UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) is funding research on vaccine responses in groups of immune-supressed individuals as part of its support for the OCTAVE study in the National Core Studies (NCS) Immunity Programme. The NCS was established in October 2020, guided by an Oversight Committee, chaired by Sir Patrick Vallance (Government Chief Scientific Adviser), to increase research scale and ultimately maintain resilience against Covid-19.

The NCS Oversight Committee members are:

  • Professor Sir John Bell (Regius Chair of Medicine, University of Oxford)
  • Sir Jeremy Farrar (Director, Wellcome Trust)
  • Professor Sir Mike Ferguson (Regius Professor of Life Sciences, University of Dundee)
  • Professor Dame Anne Johnson (Professor of Infectious Disease Epidemiology, UCL)
  • Sir Harpal Kumar (President, GRAIL Europe)
  • Professor Dame Ottoline Leyser (CEO, UKRI)
  • Dr Lynda Stuart (Lead COVID-19 Discovery and Translational Vaccine Response Team, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation)
  • Professor Chris Whitty (Chief Medical Officer and Head of the National Institute of Health Research (NIHR))

Plus, representatives of the Devolved Administrations, NIHR and Health and Safety Executive.

Further expert insights are provided by an international panel comprising Peggy Hamburg (Chair of the Board of the American Association for the Advancement of Science), Gagandeep Kang (Professor, Division of Gastrointestinal Sciences, Christian Medical College Vellore) and Gabriel Leung (Dean of Medicine, Hong Kong University).

The OCTAVE study, led by Professor Iain McInnes, University of Glasgow, has a budget of c. £2.3 million, is designed to deliver in twelve months, and is supporting research on vaccine responses in groups of immune-supressed individuals, including those with inflammatory disorders, high risk cancer patient groups, and patients with severe kidney and liver disease. Cancer patient groups include chronic lymphocytic leukaemia, myeloma, acute leukaemia, and bone marrow transplants. In addition, there are proposals on vaccine responses in high-risk clinical groups under consideration by UKRI’s Medical Research Council (MRC) as part of the UKRI COVID-19 Agile call, including in haematological cancers. These submissions will be reviewed by the MRC’s Agile Panel, which draws on members of the MRC’s Research Boards and Panels, and if supported will be coordinated with the OCTAVE study.

The Government Office for Science, acting as the NCS secretariat, establishes the formal links between the NCS and the policymakers and delivery partners in government (including No 10, Cabinet Office, Department of Health and Social Care, Public Health England and devolved equivalents, and the Joint Biosecurity Centre), ensuring that study outputs support informed policy and operational responses.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
30th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what agreements or commitments have been reached between the current shareholders of OneWeb with regard to (1) equity, (2) debt, (3) liabilities, and (4) security.

The contents of the Shareholders Agreement between Her Majesty's Government, Bharti and other minority shareholders are commercially sensitive.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
30th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether any funds allocated to support the UK space industry (1) have been, or (2) will be, used to support OneWeb.

The UK Space Agency has supported some research and development activities undertaken by OneWeb and its eligible supply chain through its subscription to the European Space Agency’s Advanced Research in Telecommunications Satellites (ARTES) programme.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
30th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government how much money has been allocated as part of the recently announced increase in defence spending to be available to support OneWeb.

The procurement of OneWeb is not a Defence matter.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
30th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether OneWeb uses any components from Huawei.

In advance of Her Majesty's Government’s investment, my Rt. Hon. Friend the Secretary of State took advice from experts both across government and externally commissioned to provide detailed scrutiny of the commercial, financial, and scientific rationales for investment and to ensure its compliance with the policy on High Risk Vendors.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
30th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they have (1) had discussions, (2) received requests, or (3) given any undertakings, in relation to the future financing of OneWeb; and if so, out of which budget will such funds be allocated.

OneWeb presents a significant commercial opportunity and we will work closely with the company and other partners to raise additional private investment.

Further information on the future financing of OneWeb remains subject to commercial sensitivities.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
30th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government how much they have spent on the acquisition of OneWeb, including transaction costs; and what costs they have incurred since becoming a shareholder of OneWeb.

The Government has committed to invest $500m in OneWeb, and will continue to work with OneWeb and consortium partners to ensure this is being used to best support the UK investment.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
9th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what percentage of Bounce Back Loans have been paid out to small businesses.

As of 7th September 2020, 1,152,511 of the total 1,157,956 Bounce Back Loans offered (99.5%) had been paid out to small and micro businesses.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
9th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what estimate they have made of the rate of defaults on Bounce Back Loans.

As of 15 November 2020, £42.18 billion of loans have been provided under the Bounce Back Loan Scheme.

The BEIS Annual Report published on 30 September contained information on all debt loan schemes and potential loss estimates.

The initial indicative loss ranges are based on historic losses observed in prior programmes which most closely resemble the current Covid-19 interventions. However, no two programmes (or two economic downturns) are completely alike, and the estimate will be revised as more data becomes available.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
9th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the proposal by the Association of Accounting Technicians that Bounce Back Loans for all small businesses should be written off.

We have always been clear that businesses are responsible for repaying any finance they take out. However, we recognise that some borrowers will benefit from flexibility for their repayments. That is why we announced the Pay as you Grow measures.

Pay as You Grow will provide Bounce Back Loan borrowers more time and flexibility over their repayments by giving them the option to:

  • Extend the length of the loan from six years to ten.
  • Make interest-only payments for six months, with the option to use this up to three times throughout the loan.
  • Once six payments have been made, have the option of a six-month repayment holiday.

Businesses will be able to use these options either individually or in combination with each other. In addition they have the option to fully repay their loan early and will face no early repayment charges for doing so.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
26th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many pre-pack administrations were referred to the Pre Pack Pool in each week since May.

There were 20 referrals to the Pre-Pack Pool between 1 May 2020 and 27 October 2020.

The table below shows the number of referrals for each week where referrals were received. For all other weeks there were zero referrals.

Referrals made to the Pre-Pack Pool between 1 May 2020 and 27 October 2020

Week commencing

Number of pre-pack referrals

1 June 2020

1

8 June 2020

1

15 June 2020

1

29 June 2020

1

6 July 2020

4

13 July 2020

5

10 Aug 2020

1

24 Aug 2020

2

28 Sept 2020

2

19 Oct 2020

2

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
26th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they will list all the meetings or communications that have taken place between the Insolvency Service and the Pre Pack Pool.

The Pre-Pack Pool was established in 2015. Since then, the Insolvency Service has had numerous meetings and communications (in the form of e-mails, letters and telephone conversations) with the directors of Pre-Pack Pool Ltd and the Pre-Pack Pool Oversight Group. The Oversight Group comprises the Pool directors and representatives from the insolvency regulatory bodies, R3 the trade body for insolvency professionals and other interested stakeholders.

My reply to the noble Lord on 3rd August 2020 to Question HL7302 advised that officials from the Insolvency Service had attended three meetings with the Pre-Pack Pool Oversight Group in 2019 and one in 2020. Since that reply, they have had one further meeting with the directors of Pre-Pack Pool Limited.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
26th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what were the results of the survey they published in September on extending the scope and powers of the Prompt Payment Code.

We have received over 400 responses to our survey on suggested reforms of the Prompt Payment Code and officials are currently analysing those responses.

We plan to publish the new Code principles before the end of the year but only after the views of those who took the time to respond have been given the consideration they deserve.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
26th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have (1) to review the operation of the Pubs Code, (2) to publish a report of the findings of that review, and (3) lay a copy of that report before Parliament, as required by section 46 of the Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Act 2015.

The report on the findings of the first statutory review of the Pubs Code and the Pubs Code Adjudicator will be published and laid before Parliament as soon as practicable.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
24th Jul 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many pre-pack administrations were referred to the Pre Pack Pool in each week since the beginning of February.

There were 16 referrals to the Pre-Pack Pool between 1 February 2020 and 24 July 2020. The table below provides a weekly break down of referrals for the period in question.

Referrals made to the Pre-Pack Pool between 1 February 2020 and 24 July 2020

Week commencing

Number of pre-pack referrals

9 March 2020

1

13 April 2020

2

1 June 2020

1

8 June 2020

1

15 June 2020

1

29 June 2020

1

6 July 2020

4

13 July 2020

5

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
24th Jul 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government, for each of the pre-pack administrations referred to the Pre Pack Pool since the beginning of February, what was the amount owed to unsecured creditors.

Applications to the Pre-Pack Pool are made in confidence and the Insolvency Service does not hold this information. However, if a company subsequently enters administration, details of amounts owed to unsecured creditors must be set out in a statement of affairs of the company, which must be filed at Companies House and made available on the company’s public record as soon as reasonably practicable by the administrator.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
24th Jul 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what support the Pre Pack Pool has received from the Insolvency Service; and what plans they have, if any, to enhance this support.

The Pre-Pack Pool’s operation is overseen by the Pre-Pack Pool Oversight Group, which comprises representatives from the creditor community, the insolvency profession, insolvency regulators and officials from the Insolvency Service. The Insolvency Service also provides secretariat support to the Oversight Group.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
24th Jul 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many meetings have taken place between the Pre Pack Pool and the Insolvency service in (1) 2019, and (2) 2020; and what subjects were discussed.

Officials from the Insolvency Service attended three meetings of the Pre-Pack Pool Oversight Group in 2019 and one meeting so far in 2020. The Pre-Pack Pool Oversight Group includes representatives from the Pre-Pack Pool. The meetings attended by officials discussed the operation of the Pre-Pack Pool and the Insolvency Service’s review of voluntary measures to reform pre-pack sales in administration.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
24th Jul 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Callanan on 26 February (HL1663), what progress they have made on the measures announced in June 2019 to strengthen the role of the Small Business Commissioner.

The Government is fully committed on fulfilling its manifesto commitment to?strengthen the powers of the Small Business Commissioner. We?still?plan to consult on?extending?those powers, to allow the Commissioner to advocate for and support small businesses,?as soon as we?are able to do so.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
16th Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of businesses using pre-pack administration processes to buy back subsidiaries at a discounted rate while failing to repay creditors.

The Insolvency Service has carried out an assessment of the impact of voluntary measures introduced in 2015 to improve transparency and confidence in pre-pack sales to connected parties in administration. The findings will be published in due course.

There is some protection in insolvency legislation for unsecured creditors in the form of the “prescribed part”, which is the amount of a company’s assets that must be reserved for the benefit of unsecured creditors when it enters administration.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
16th Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the use of pre-pack administrations by businesses that have previously extracted large dividends through subsidiaries based in tax havens.

There has been no assessment by Government of the use of pre-pack administrations by businesses that have previously extracted large dividends through subsidiaries based in tax havens.

The Insolvency Service has, however, carried out an assessment of the impact of voluntary measures introduced in 2015 to improve transparency and confidence in pre-pack sales in administration. The findings will be published in due course.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
16th Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the impact of pre-pack administrations on SME creditors.

The Government has not carried out a specific assessment of the impact of prepacks on SMEs. However, the Insolvency Service has reviewed the impact of voluntary measures introduced in 2015 to improve transparency and confidence in pre-pack sales in administration, including the impact on creditors and its findings will be issued in due course.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
16th Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to address the Pre Pack Pool Oversight Group’s suggestion that the Pre Pack Pool is “unsustainable” unless referrals of pre-pack sales to the Pool are made mandatory.

There has been a very low number of referrals to the Pre-Pack Pool which was set up by industry to provide opinions on a voluntary basis on pre-pack sales in administration to connected parties.

However, the Government continues to work with regulators and industry stakeholders to discuss options for strengthening the professional standards for insolvency practitioners to give greater assurance to creditors where a sale is to a connected party.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
16th Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to make it mandatory for large businesses to notify the Pre Pack Pool of proposed Pre-pack administration deals.

The Insolvency Service continues to work with regulators and industry stakeholders to discuss options for strengthening the professional standards for insolvency practitioners and give greater assurance to creditors where a sale in a prepack administration is to a connected party.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
16th Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of (1) the effectiveness of the Pre Pack Pool, and (2) the proportion of eligible cases being referred for review dropping to 10 per cent, according to the Pre-Pack Pool’s latest Annual Report.

The Pre-Pack Pool is one of a number of voluntary measures introduced in November 2015 to improve transparency and confidence in pre-pack sales in administration. The Insolvency Service has carried out an assessment of the impact of these measures and will publish its findings in due course.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
3rd Mar 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Callanan on 26 February (HL1665), what proportion of businesses who have signed up to the Prompt Payment Code have their (1) procurement and purchasing policy, (2) 'how to get paid' details, and (3) responsible board director, listed on the Prompt Payment Code website.

Data provided by the Chartered Institute of Credit Management states that (1) 6% of Code signatories (153 of 2,472) have provided their procurement and purchasing policy; (2) 49% (1,205 of 2,472) have provided their ‘how to get paid’ details; and 54% (1,329 of 2,472) have provided their responsible board director information for inclusion on the Prompt Payment Code website.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
25th Feb 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Callanan on 24 February (HL1666), what measures they have used to ensure that the 34 businesses reinstated to the Prompt Payment Code remain compliant with the Code; and (2) what assessment they have made of the impact of any such measures on suppliers.

Payment Performance of the companies reinstated to the Prompt Payment Code will remain under review. The administration of the Code will shortly be transferred to Office of the Small Business Commissioner. Post-transfer, the Office of the Small Business Commissioner will continue to challenge signatories to the Code if their Payment Practice Reporting data suggests that their practices are not compliant with the Code. Following a suspension, signatories will only be reinstated once they have demonstrated that they have achieved compliance.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
25th Feb 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Callanan on 24 February (HL1666), what was the average length of time taken to pay invoices to SME suppliers by (1) the 66 businesses suspended from the Prompt Payment Code, and (2) the businesses that remain signatories to the Code.

The Payment Practices Reporting Duty data is used to monitor compliance with the Code, where companies are legally required to report their payment practices. The legal duty to submit data does not require differentiation in reports between payments to SMEs and payments to large companies. It requires them to report on payments of all invoices across the company. Additionally, the voluntary Code requires signatories to pay 95% of all invoices in 60 days and signatories are not required to provide information on payment terms and payment performance relating to SMEs as a separate requirement. Therefore, this data is not available.

We will shortly begin engagement with current signatories on the reform and strengthening of the Code.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
25th Feb 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government (1) what percentage of large businesses operating in the UK are signatories to the Prompt Payment Code; and (2) what target they have set, if any, for the percentage of such businesses to be signatories to the Code.

The Government does not hold precise figures on the number of large businesses signed up to the Prompt Payment Code.

The Government has not set Code sign-up targets, but we are fully committed to ensure as many businesses as possible sign up to the Code. We will shortly begin engagement with current signatories on the reform and strengthening of the Code.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
13th Feb 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government when they plan to launch their consultation on strengthening the powers of the Small Business Commissioner.

The Government is committed to delivering our manifesto commitment to strengthen the powers of the Small Business Commissioner and clamp down on late payments. Strengthening these powers will support small businesses who struggle to cover financial shortfalls and find temporary finance more expensive to obtain.

Good progress is being made on the policies announced in the Government Response to the Call for Evidence to assess what further steps and intervention may be needed to create a responsible payment culture.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
13th Feb 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government when full responsibility for the Prompt Payment Code will be moved to the Small Business Commissioner.

We are working with the Interim Small Business Commissioner to transfer the administration of the Code by the end of the financial year.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
13th Feb 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what proportion of businesses who have signed up to the Prompt Payment Code have their standard payment terms listed on the Prompt Payment Code website.

Data provided by the Chartered Institute of Credit Management states that 53% of Code signatories (1,317 of the 2,472) have provided their standard payment terms for inclusion on the Prompt Payment Code website.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
13th Feb 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government which businesses have been removed from the Prompt Payment Code due to non-compliance.

Since the Government announced its new tough and transparent compliance regime for the Prompt Payment Code, 66 businesses have been suspended from the Code while 34 of those have subsequently been reinstated, having committed to improve their treatment of suppliers, thus demonstrating compliance. The improved payment practices of those businesses who were suspended and reinstated demonstrates the effectiveness of the Code in positively changing payment behaviours.

A full list of companies can be found within the related press releases on the website of the Chartered Institute of Credit Management.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
13th Feb 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what is their latest estimate of the amount owed to UK SMEs as a result of late payment.

There are several organisations that have produced estimates for outstanding late payment debt, and the disparities between them can be sizeable due to different methodologies and sample sizes. The government keeps estimates under continuous review, including Pay.UK figures.

Late payments are a drain on productivity and have an immediate impact on cashflow, particularly for small businesses. This Government made a manifesto commitment to clamp down on late payment more broadly and strengthen the powers of the Small Business Commissioner to support small business that are exploited by their larger partners.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
13th Feb 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the survey by Pay.UK, published in November 2019, showing that the amount owed to small businesses in late payments increased from £13 billion in 2018 to £23.4 billion in 2019.

There are several organisations that have produced estimates for outstanding late payment debt, and the disparities between them can be sizeable due to different methodologies and sample sizes. The government keeps estimates under continuous review, including Pay.UK figures.

Late payments are a drain on productivity and have an immediate impact on cashflow, particularly for small businesses. This Government made a manifesto commitment to clamp down on late payment more broadly and strengthen the powers of the Small Business Commissioner to support small business that are exploited by their larger partners.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
24th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what is their estimate of the value of student loan debt for each of the past five years.

It is not possible to provide the complete information requested within the body of the answer as this would exceed the word limit for responses. Please see the below links to the relevant reports. A copy of these reports will also be deposited in the Libraries of both Houses.

The valuation of the loan book is listed in the annual reports on GOV.UK, at the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/dfe-annual-reports. The note on loans under the ‘Notes to Accounts’ section lists both the carrying and face value of the loan book.

For the 2019-20 annual accounts, the details for the carrying value are on page 195 and the details for the face value of the loan book are on page 202: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/932898/DfE_consolidated_annual_report_and_accounts_2019_to_2020__web_version_.pdf.

For the 2018-19 annual accounts, the details for the carrying value are on page 159 and the details for the face value of the loan book are on page 161: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/906353/DfE_Consolidated_annual_report_2018-19_web.pdf.

For the 2017-18 annual accounts, the details for the carrying value are on page 147 and the details for the face value of the loan book are on page 148: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/728074/DfE_annual_reports_and_accounts_17_to_18_-_WEB.pdf.

For the 2016-17 annual accounts, the details for the carrying value are on page 154 and the details for the face value of the loan book are on page 155: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/630523/DfE_Consolidated_annual_report_and_accounts_2016-17_WEB.pdf.

For the 2015-16 annual accounts, the details for the carrying value are on page 177 and the details for the face value of the loan book are on page 178: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/537425/bis-annual-report-accounts-2015-16-web.pdf.

Lord Parkinson of Whitley Bay
Lord in Waiting (HM Household) (Whip)
24th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of graduate earnings in their calculation of the write off of student loan debt.

The department’s assessment of the earnings of student loan borrowers takes into account the latest Student Loan Company and Longitudinal Education Outcomes data, plus survey data from the Labour Force Survey and British Household Panel Survey, mortality statistics from the Office for National Statistics and macro-economic forecasts of earnings growth from the Office for Budget Responsibility. The assessment can be accessed here: https://obr.uk/fsr/fiscal-sustainability-report-july-2020/, in the document 'July 2020 Fiscal sustainability report - charts and tables: Chapter 2'. Detailed information on the assessment of graduate earnings is published in the Earnings forecasts section of the Student Loans methodology, which can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/student-loan-forecasts-england-2019-to-2020, in the document 'Student loan forecasts, England 2019 to 2020: quality and methodology information'. The next update to the student loan forecasts publication is announced for June 2021.

Lord Parkinson of Whitley Bay
Lord in Waiting (HM Household) (Whip)
24th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what calculation they use to decide the level of write off of student loan debt.

The government publishes its loan write-off rules, available here: https://www.gov.uk/repaying-your-student-loan/when-your-student-loan-gets-written-off-or-cancelled. We estimate the proportion of loan outlay issued in each financial year that we do not expect to be repaid through a metric called the Resource And Budgeting (RAB) charge.

The RAB charge is calculated by taking repayment forecasts for income contingent repayment loans and discounting them back to the period that the loan is issued using the discount rate provided by HM Treasury (currently RPI+0.7%). This gives us a net present value (NPV) of the future repayments and the charge is the relative difference between the loan issued and the NPV of the repayments. Further details of the RAB charge calculation are provided in the annual student loan forecast publication methodology document, available here: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/920992/Student_loan_forecasts_201920.pdf.

The RAB charge estimate is determined by earnings and repayment projections over the next 30-40 years, and therefore is inherently uncertain. Forecasts for the RAB charge are published each year, and are available here: https://explore-education-statistics.service.gov.uk/find-statistics/student-loan-forecasts-for-england/2019-20.

Lord Parkinson of Whitley Bay
Lord in Waiting (HM Household) (Whip)
24th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what is the write off value of the sale of student loan debt in each of the last five years.

A total of £8.1 million has been written off from the sold loan cohorts in the financial years 2016/17 to 2020/21.

Lord Parkinson of Whitley Bay
Lord in Waiting (HM Household) (Whip)
24th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the UK's departure from the EU, what assessment they have made of the ability of (1) UK citizens to work in the EU, and (2) the earnings potential of graduates, in calculating the write off of student loan debt.

The Withdrawal Agreement protects the rights of UK nationals who were lawfully resident in the EU before the end of the transition period, meaning they can continue to live, work, study, and access benefits and services broadly as they did before the UK left the EU. Member states may require a visa and/or work permit from British citizens intending to work or provide a service there.  British citizens should check with the embassy of the country where they plan to travel for work or to provide a service for what type of visa or permit, if any, they will need.

Regardless of the UK’s departure from the EU, the assessment of the earnings of student loan borrowers continues to take into account the latest Student Loan Company and Longitudinal Education Outcomes data, plus survey data from the Labour Force Survey and British Household Panel Survey, mortality statistics from the Office for National Statistics and macro-economic forecasts of earnings growth from the Office for Budget Responsibility. The assessment can be accessed here: https://obr.uk/fsr/fiscal-sustainability-report-july-2020/, in the document 'July 2020 Fiscal sustainability report - charts and tables: Chapter 2'. Detailed information on the assessment of graduate earnings is published in the Earnings forecasts section of the Student Loans methodology, which can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/student-loan-forecasts-england-2019-to-2020, in the document 'Student loan forecasts, England 2019 to 2020: quality and methodology information'. The next update to the student loan forecasts publication is announced for June 2021.

Lord Parkinson of Whitley Bay
Lord in Waiting (HM Household) (Whip)
5th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government (1) what assessment they have made of whether current guidelines for schools are sufficient to address the spread of (a) the strain of COVID-19 identified in the UK, and (b) the reported “South African” strain of COVID-19; (2) who has conducted and is conducting any such assessment; (3) whether they plan to provide any new safety measures to schools to address any such new strains of COVID-19; and (4) if so, when they plan to do so.

The department has worked closely with Public Health England to develop a system of controls to reduce the risk of transmission in schools. When implemented in line with a revised risk assessment, these measures create an inherently safer environment for children and staff where the risk of transmission of infection is substantially reduced. The system of controls is reviewed continually in light of new evidence – including evidence about new variants.

There is no evidence the new variant of the virus ‘VUI – 202012/01’, identified in the UK, causes more serious illness in either children or adults and there continues to be strong evidence to date that children and younger people (under 18 years) are much less susceptible to severe clinical disease than older people.

There is no current evidence that it may be particularly dangerous to clinically extremely vulnerable children.

We will continue to work closely with Public Health England and others to update our guidance based on the latest medical and scientific advice.

8th Dec 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to incorporate content into the national curriculum to support educators to counter conspiracy theories.

In June 2019, we published guidance on teaching online safety in schools, which can be accessed here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/teaching-online-safety-in-schools.

This non-statutory guidance outlines how schools can ensure their pupils understand how to stay safe and behave online as part of existing curriculum requirements. It complements existing and forthcoming subjects, including Relationships Education, Relationships and Sex Education, Health Education, Citizenship, and Computing.

There are many aspects of the curriculum that can help young people develop the knowledge and digital skills they need to recognise misinformation, disinformation, and conspiracy theories. For example, citizenship teaches about critical media literacy in relation to the proper functioning of a democracy. Pupils learn about distinguishing fact from opinion, as well as exploring freedom of speech and the role and responsibility of the media in informing and shaping public opinion. History teaches pupils to understand how different types of historical sources are used to make historical claims, and discern how and why contrasting arguments and interpretations of the past have been constructed. The computing curriculum, introduced in 2014, is providing children and teachers with the fundamental knowledge to make well-informed decisions on e-safety, from Key Stages 1 to 4. There is progression in the content, to reflect the different and escalating online risks that young people face.

Additionally, 'Education for a connected world', developed by the UK Council for Internet Safety Education group, provides schools support to develop a rich, effective and developmental curriculum, which will support young people to be safe, healthy and thrive online. It includes a section on the importance of children knowing how to identify and distinguish between fake news, disinformation, and misinformation.

15th Jul 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to issue guidance to transport operators whose services cross the border between England and Scotland in relation to the different policies on COVID-related mask-wearing in the two countries.

Guidance for transport operators is now available on GOV.UK to reflect step 4 changes. Operators are advised to make to themselves aware of any changes in rules when providing services that cross the border from England into one of the other UK nations and where possible to communicate this to passengers. Links to the rules for Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales are included in the operator guidance. Passengers are also advised to make themselves aware of any rule changes when travelling from England to another of the UK nations.

Baroness Vere of Norbiton
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
4th Oct 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what information and guidance they will provide to employers on how best to protect people who are severely immunosuppressed and may not mount an adequate immune response to the COVID-19 vaccine.

I refer the hon. Peer to the answer given to his previous question HL2092.

Throughout the pandemic, HSE has encouraged businesses to manage risks in order to reduce the transmission of COVID-19 in workplaces through the provision of detailed guidance. HSE published updated guidance on 19th July to reflect changes as a result of the lifting of coronavirus restrictions in England Keeping workplaces safe as coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions are removed (hse.gov.uk).

HSE does not consider vaccination of employees to be a workplace control. Businesses must control the risks and review and update their risk assessment to reduce the transmission of COVID-19 by providing adequate ventilation, regular cleaning and frequent handwashing. Businesses can also continue to reduce the risk of transmission during the pandemic by taking measures to limit the number of people their workers are in contact with, and UK government guidance on working safely provides further information and advice on these measures covering a range of different types of work.

Employers’ health and safety responsibilities include taking reasonable steps to protect all workers and others from the risk of transmission of COVID-19 in connection with their work activities. As these control measures apply to all workers, regardless of their relative levels of vulnerability or the potential outcome, there are no expectations of additional control measures for Clinically Extremely Vulnerable (CEV) workers or the need for individual risk assessments.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) advises employers to have individual discussions with their CEV employees about any workplace concerns and understand what is in place to protect them. There is specific guidance on the HSE website to support employers to do this https://www.hse.gov.uk/coronavirus/working-safely/protect-people.htm

Baroness Stedman-Scott
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
4th Oct 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the risk associated with severely immunosuppressed people, including kidney transplant patients, returning to the workplace; and whether specific advice and workplace support will be provided to this group.

I refer the hon. Peer to the answer given to his previous question HL2092.

Throughout the pandemic, HSE has encouraged businesses to manage risks in order to reduce the transmission of COVID-19 in workplaces through the provision of detailed guidance. HSE published updated guidance on 19th July to reflect changes as a result of the lifting of coronavirus restrictions in England Keeping workplaces safe as coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions are removed (hse.gov.uk).

HSE does not consider vaccination of employees to be a workplace control. Businesses must control the risks and review and update their risk assessment to reduce the transmission of COVID-19 by providing adequate ventilation, regular cleaning and frequent handwashing. Businesses can also continue to reduce the risk of transmission during the pandemic by taking measures to limit the number of people their workers are in contact with, and UK government guidance on working safely provides further information and advice on these measures covering a range of different types of work.

Employers’ health and safety responsibilities include taking reasonable steps to protect all workers and others from the risk of transmission of COVID-19 in connection with their work activities. As these control measures apply to all workers, regardless of their relative levels of vulnerability or the potential outcome, there are no expectations of additional control measures for Clinically Extremely Vulnerable (CEV) workers or the need for individual risk assessments.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) advises employers to have individual discussions with their CEV employees about any workplace concerns and understand what is in place to protect them. There is specific guidance on the HSE website to support employers to do this https://www.hse.gov.uk/coronavirus/working-safely/protect-people.htm

Baroness Stedman-Scott
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
4th Oct 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they will take to support (1) people living with stage 5 kidney disease, and (2) severely immunosuppressed people in the workplace, given recently published data show these groups are not adequately protected following two doses of the COVID-19 vaccine.

I refer the hon. Peer to the answer given to his previous question HL2092.

Throughout the pandemic, HSE has encouraged businesses to manage risks in order to reduce the transmission of COVID-19 in workplaces through the provision of detailed guidance. HSE published updated guidance on 19th July to reflect changes as a result of the lifting of coronavirus restrictions in England Keeping workplaces safe as coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions are removed (hse.gov.uk).

HSE does not consider vaccination of employees to be a workplace control. Businesses must control the risks and review and update their risk assessment to reduce the transmission of COVID-19 by providing adequate ventilation, regular cleaning and frequent handwashing. Businesses can also continue to reduce the risk of transmission during the pandemic by taking measures to limit the number of people their workers are in contact with, and UK government guidance on working safely provides further information and advice on these measures covering a range of different types of work.

Employers’ health and safety responsibilities include taking reasonable steps to protect all workers and others from the risk of transmission of COVID-19 in connection with their work activities. As these control measures apply to all workers, regardless of their relative levels of vulnerability or the potential outcome, there are no expectations of additional control measures for Clinically Extremely Vulnerable (CEV) workers or the need for individual risk assessments.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) advises employers to have individual discussions with their CEV employees about any workplace concerns and understand what is in place to protect them. There is specific guidance on the HSE website to support employers to do this https://www.hse.gov.uk/coronavirus/working-safely/protect-people.htm

Baroness Stedman-Scott
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
15th Jul 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to produce guidance for employers, to accompany the lifting of COVID-19 related restrictions on 19 July, about the health and safety of employees who are immunocompromised or immunosuppressed and therefore not protected by the COVID-19 vaccine.

Throughout the pandemic, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has encouraged businesses to manage risks in order to reduce the transmission of COVID-19 in workplaces through the provision of detailed guidance. HSE published updated guidance on 19 July - Keeping workplaces safe as coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions are removed (which can be found at https://www.hse.gov.uk/coronavirus/roadmap-further-guidance.htm) - to reflect changes as a result of the lifting of coronavirus restrictions in England.

HSE does not consider vaccination of employees to be a workplace control. Businesses must control the risks and review and update their risk assessment to reduce the transmission of COVID-19 by providing adequate ventilation, regular cleaning and frequent handwashing. Businesses can also continue to reduce the risk of transmission during the pandemic by taking measures to limit the number of people their workers are in contact with, and UK government guidance on working safely (which can be found at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-covid-19) provides further information and advice on these measures covering a range of different types of work.

Employers’ health and safety responsibilities include taking reasonable steps to protect all workers and others from the risk of transmission of COVID-19 in connection with their work activities. As these control measures apply to all workers, regardless of their relative levels of vulnerability or the potential outcome, there are no expectations of additional control measures for Clinically Extremely Vulnerable (CEV) workers or the need for individual risk assessments.

HSE advises employers to have individual discussions with their CEV employees about any workplace concerns and understand what is in place to protect them. There is specific guidance on the HSE website to support employers to do this https://www.hse.gov.uk/coronavirus/working-safely/protect-people.htm

Baroness Stedman-Scott
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
3rd Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many arrangements the Pensions Regulator has made with pension schemes with a deficit in excess of £10 million but less than £25 million since 2005; with which schemes any such arrangements have been made; and for each such scheme, (1) how the deficit was met, and (2) whether there was any difference in the reported deficit and that which had to be met.

The information requested on arrangements made by the Pensions Regulator is either not available, or could only be provided at disproportionate cost.

Baroness Stedman-Scott
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
3rd Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many arrangements the Pensions Regulator has made with pension schemes with a deficit in excess of £50 million since 2005; with which schemes any such arrangements have been made; and for each such scheme, (1) how the deficit was met, and (2) whether there was any difference in the reported deficit and that which had to be met.

The information requested on arrangements made by the Pensions Regulator is either not available, or could only be provided at disproportionate cost.

Baroness Stedman-Scott
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
14th Dec 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government which company pension schemes have been put into the Pension Protection Fund since 2015; and when were each of these schemes transferred to the Pension Protection Fund.

The information requested is in the attached table.

Baroness Stedman-Scott
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
14th Dec 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government, for each company pension scheme which has been put into the Pension Protection Fund since 2015, what was (1) the amount of liability on transfer, and (2) the contribution by way of cash or assets made to reduce the amount of liability on transfer.

The information requested is in the attached table.

The table shows schemes transferred to the Pension Protection Fund (PPF) from 1 April 2015 to 30 September 2020 which is the latest date for which figures are available. The liabilities are calculated in line with PPF’s accounting practice on the date the scheme transferred. The total assets in respect of each scheme are provided but a further breakdown into asset types is not available

Baroness Stedman-Scott
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
28th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many spot checks and inspections of employer premises have been conducted by the Health and Safety Executive to ensure that they are COVID-19 secure in each of the past six months for which figures are available.

From the 1st May 2020 to 27th October 2020, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has conducted 34310 spot checks and inspections of employer premises to ensure they are COVID-19 secure.

Table 1 - Breakdown of spot checks and inspections by month:

Calendar Month - 2020

Spot checks and inspections

May

89

June

2072

July

4513

August

5916

September

8960

1st – 27th October

12760

Total

34310

Note: The data is taken from HSE’s live operational database. It represents the picture as at 27th October 2020 and is subject to change, e.g. as inspection data is uploaded.

Baroness Stedman-Scott
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
27th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many reported breaches of the COVID-secure workplace guidance have been received by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE); what proportion of those were investigated by the HSE; and what proportion of such investigations triggered formal advice to the relevant employer.

To date, 14817 COVID-related workplace concerns have been reported to HSE. 4895 (approximately 33%) have been assigned to inspectors for investigation. The remainder have been dealt with by HSE’s Concerns and Advice Team.

Of the 4895 concerns assigned to inspectors, 4284 have had a recorded outcome to date.

Of these, 22 (approx. 0.5 %) required formal enforcement notices, 220 (approx. 5.1%) written correspondence indicating there was a breach of the law and confirming the action required to make the workplace safe and 1118 (approx. 26.1%) verbal advice to secure compliance with health and safety at work law. The remainder required no action.

Note: The figures were extracted from HSE’s live operational database and provide the picture on the date of extraction (27th October 2020). Any new cases yet to be added to the system will not be included.

Baroness Stedman-Scott
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
17th Jul 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether those who are extremely clinically vulnerable will have access to sick pay on receipt of a shielding letter if COVID-19 lockdown restrictions are re-introduced (1) nationally, and (2) locally.

Guidance around shielding will be continually reviewed and informed by the latest scientific evidence and advice. We will continue to assess the support in place should advice to shield be reinstated. If shielding guidance changes again either nationally, or locally, after 31 July and extremely clinically vulnerable individuals are again asked to shield, they will be entitled to receive Statutory Sick Pay where they meet all eligibility criteria.

Baroness Stedman-Scott
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
7th Dec 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government when they expect patients to receive treatment with products made from UK plasma.

The Department, NHS Blood and Transplant and NHS England and NHS Improvement are working to create a long-term domestic supply of plasma in England which can be used to manufacture immunoglobulins. The tender notice is due to be issued early 2022, with the aim of appointing a fractionator during that year.

The production of medicines is complex and highly regulated and materials and processes must meet rigorous safety and quality standards. Subject to the necessary regulatory approvals, we expect United Kingdom plasma sourced immunoglobulins to be available to National Health Service patients in 2024.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
7th Dec 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government why they have not yet appointed a supplier of immunoglobulin products; and when they expect to have completed the tender process.

The Department, NHS Blood and Transplant and NHS England and NHS Improvement are working to create a long-term domestic supply of plasma in England which can be used to manufacture immunoglobulins. The tender notice is due to be issued early 2022, with the aim of appointing a fractionator during that year.

The production of medicines is complex and highly regulated and materials and processes must meet rigorous safety and quality standards. Subject to the necessary regulatory approvals, we expect United Kingdom plasma sourced immunoglobulins to be available to National Health Service patients in 2024.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
7th Dec 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government when Ronapreve will be available for (1) immunocompromised patients unlikely to mount a vaccine response, and (2) patients at higher risk of poorer COVID-19 outcomes prior to hospitalisation.

On 20 August 2021, the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency approved Ronapreve (casirivimab and imdevimab) as the first monoclonal antibody combination product indicated for use in the prevention and treatment of acute COVID-19 infection. A new NHS interim clinical policy will provide access for the most vulnerable non-hospitalised patients in the community with early-stage disease from 16 December, including the immunocompromised and those patients at higher risk of poorer COVID-19 outcomes.

The current supply of Ronapreve is limited globally, therefore the clinical policy prioritises the most vulnerable patients for whom this treatment will provide the most benefit, supported by clinical evidence.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
6th Dec 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to ensure people who are immunosuppressed or immunocompromised receive clear communication regarding their risk from the Omicron variant of COVID-19 and the steps they can take to mitigate that risk.

The Government issued updated public health advice on 24 December 2021 for people whose immune system means they are at higher risk of serious outcomes from COVID-19. This states that people who are immunosuppressed or immunocompromised are advised to:

- ensure they have had all of the vaccines they are eligible to receive, including their booster;

- continue to follow any condition-specific advice they may have been given by their specialist;

- work from home if they can. If they cannot work from home, they should speak to their employer about what temporary arrangements they can make to reduce the risk;

- wait until 14 days after another person’s most recent dose of a COVID-19 vaccine before being in close contact with them;

- avoid enclosed crowded spaces;

- practice social distancing if appropriate;

- ventilate their home by opening windows and doors;

- ask friends and family to take a rapid lateral flow antigen test before visiting them;

- ask home visitors to wear face coverings; and

- wash their hands regularly and avoid touching their face.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
6th Dec 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what communications have been issued by the NHS in England about the immunoglobulin shortage to patient groups supporting people with immunodeficiency; and whether the NHS in England has communicated directly with patients to explain the situation and how it will affect them.

With the input of clinicians, professional bodies and patient groups, NHS England and NHS Improvement and the UK Primary Immunodeficiency Network have developed a patient information leaflet which was issued to National Health Service trusts on 8 November 2021, with a request to discuss and share with patients as part of individual clinical conversations. NHS England and NHS Improvement have also shared the leaflet with patient groups to circulate to affected members.

The patient information leaflet highlights that, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, fewer people have been able to donate blood, which has impacted the availability of immunoglobulin products both globally and in the United Kingdom. The patient information leaflet also explains what the impact of the global shortage of immunoglobulin products may mean for UK patients and how they can access support. A copy of the patient leaflet, Immunoglobulin replacement therapy: Information for patients from the NHS and the UK Primary Immunodeficiency Network is attached.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
6th Dec 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the benefits of testing the antibody levels of immunosuppressed or immunocompromised individuals given the spread of the Omicron variant of COVID-19.

There are currently no plans to implement targeted antibody testing for immunocompromised patients. However, clinicians in the National Health Service can arrange antibody testing based on their assessment of clinical need. Those with a cancer diagnosis may also be able to access free antibody tests through the National Cancer COVID Survey, which aims to assess levels of protection conferred by antibodies following vaccination/infection in cancer patients.  The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation will continue to review emerging scientific evidence on the use of vaccines in those who are immunocompromised and will update its advice as necessary.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
6th Dec 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many challenges have been made to the sub-regional immunoglobulin assessment panels in the last year concerning access to immunoglobulin therapy; and how many decisions have been overturned.

The information requested is not held centrally. Clinical decision-making information is held by the relevant provider organisation hosting the panels.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
1st Dec 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of whether supplies of immunoglobin are sufficient to meet current demand; and what steps they are taking to ensure that all patients can be maintained on the therapy they need.

At the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, NHS England and NHS Improvement’s national commissioning criteria for the use of therapeutic immunoglobulin provided expert guidance for the management of patients on immunoglobulin treatment. There is a demand management plan available for use as a contingency to address any instance of constrained supply.

At present, supplies of immunoglobulin are available for patients who require it. An updated demand management plan is currently being developed with updated commissioning criteria to ensure immunoglobulin remains accessible.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
1st Dec 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what contingency planning the NHS made to ensure continuity of supply for immunoglobin for patients at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

At the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, NHS England and NHS Improvement’s national commissioning criteria for the use of therapeutic immunoglobulin provided expert guidance for the management of patients on immunoglobulin treatment. There is a demand management plan available for use as a contingency to address any instance of constrained supply.

At present, supplies of immunoglobulin are available for patients who require it. An updated demand management plan is currently being developed with updated commissioning criteria to ensure immunoglobulin remains accessible.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
30th Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many newly-diagnosed patients with (1) primary or (2) secondary immunodeficiency in the UK, who fit the eligibility criteria for immunoglobulin use, have been refused access to immunoglobulin this year.

The information requested is not held centrally. However, the clinical assessment of individual patients will determine the most appropriate pathway to meet their needs.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
30th Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how much the NHS has invested in multi-parametric magnetic resonance imaging scanners in the last three years.

The information requested on the number of multi-parametric magnetic resonance imaging (mpMRI) capable scanners and the investment in such scanners in the last three years is not held centrally.

However, NHS England and NHS Improvement’s national magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) specification includes the capability to perform mpMRI for prostate cancer. A total of 97 MRI machines were purchased through the £200 million equipment replacement programme to this specification from October 2019 to March 2021. NHS trusts are encouraged to adopt the national specification as a minimum requirement when purchasing new MRI equipment.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
30th Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many multi-parametric magnetic resonance imaging scans are in use in each Cancer Alliance.

The information requested on the number of multi-parametric magnetic resonance imaging (mpMRI) capable scanners and the investment in such scanners in the last three years is not held centrally.

However, NHS England and NHS Improvement’s national magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) specification includes the capability to perform mpMRI for prostate cancer. A total of 97 MRI machines were purchased through the £200 million equipment replacement programme to this specification from October 2019 to March 2021. NHS trusts are encouraged to adopt the national specification as a minimum requirement when purchasing new MRI equipment.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
30th Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of how the number of multi-parametric magnetic resonance imaging scanners per capita in England compares to (1) France, (2) Germany, and (3) Spain.

This specific assessment has not been made. The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development records the number of magnetAic resonance imaging (MRI) scanners per million inhabitants in the United Kingdom. However, this data is UK-wide rather than for England. This data does not differentiate between machine type, therefore data for multi-parametric MRI scanners is not held in the format requested and does not allow this comparison to be made.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
30th Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how the NHS is monitoring (1) the health of patients who (a) have been denied access to immunoglobulin therapy or (b) are on sub-optimal care in relation to immunoglobulin therapy, and (2) the additional cost of patients (a) not having immunoglobulin treatment or (b) being on sub-optimal treatment.

Clinicians are responsible for the ongoing monitoring and assessment of patients who receive sub-optimal immunoglobulin therapy and those who have not received immunoglobulin therapy through existing mechanisms to review patients, such as annual reviews and outpatient face-to-face or virtual appointments.

Sub-regional immunoglobulin assessment panels provide oversight and scrutiny for all patients receiving immunoglobulin therapy. For all disorders where immunoglobulin is used as treatment, treatment decisions are based on NHS England and NHS Improvement’s clinical commissioning criteria for the use of therapeutic immunoglobulin. For patients with secondary antibody deficiency, consensus recommendations from experts in the United Kingdom and Europe and draft European Summary of Product Characteristics for immunoglobulin provide additional evidence to support temporary suspension, reduction in dose or withdrawal of immunoglobulin in selected patients. NHS England and NHS Improvement are unable to quantify the additional cost of patients not receiving immunoglobulin treatment and who may be receiving an alternative treatment such as rituximab or plasma exchange.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
30th Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many patients in the last year have (1) been taken off therapy, (2) had to change immunoglobulin product, (3) been advised of treatment holidays, or (4) received reduced doses, because of a shortage of immunoglobulin.

The information requested is not held centrally, as such decisions are made by expert clinicians locally.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
29th Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to address staff capacity issues within the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency to ensure that patients get treatments in a timely manner.

The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) is moving to a focused and integrated organisational model to improve the outcomes it delivers for patients and the public. The MHRA has designed its proposed structure around the lifecycle of a product: science; research and innovation; healthcare; quality and access; and safety and surveillance. This will refocus its resources to ensure that new treatments are licensed and delivered more quickly. While the MHRA will be a smaller organisation, it will retain and increase its scientific and regulatory capabilities.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
29th Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government why patients dependent on immunoglobulin are experiencing (1) treatment "holidays", (2) longer waits between treatments, and (3) smaller doses; and what steps they are taking to secure (a) a stable, and (b) a secure, supply of immunoglobulin.

Clinicians are responsible for the management of patients, including dosage and dosing intervals, with the oversight and governance of sub-regional immunoglobulin assessment panels. The decision to recommend treatment holidays, extended intervals between treatment and reduction of doses in selected patients is based on consensus recommendations from United Kingdom and European experts and draft European Summary of Product Characteristics for immunoglobulin.

The immunoglobulin management plan, currently being produced, will enable the management of immunoglobulin in times of significant supply issues and ensure equal access of immunoglobulin to all patients. The Department has well established processes to deal with medicine shortages and works closely with the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency, the pharmaceutical industry, NHS England and NHS Improvement and others operating in the supply chain to prevent shortages and ensure that risks to patients are minimised when shortages do arise.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
29th Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to monitor (1) immunocompromised patients' antibody levels, and (2) their variation over time, in response to the rollout of the third primary dose vaccination.

The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) is monitoring the effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccinations in clinical risk groups, including those with immunosuppression. The VirusWatch study monitors antibody response over time following COVID-19 vaccination, including the third primary dose, among individuals with immunosuppression.

As part of the COVID-19 Immunity National Core Study, the UK Research and Innovation OCTAVE study is examining the immune response to COVID-19 vaccines in clinically at-risk groups. This includes vaccine responses in patients with certain immunosuppressed conditions. These analyses will monitor the duration of immunity from COVID-19 vaccination.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
16th Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to rollout Ronapreve as a prophylactic preventative treatment for COVID-19.

On 20 August 2021, the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) approved Ronapreve (casirivimab and imdevimab) as the first monoclonal antibody combination product indicated for use in the prevention and treatment of acute COVID-19 infection.

The current supply of Ronapreve is limited globally, therefore the clinical policy prioritises the most vulnerable hospitalised patients for whom this treatment will provide the most benefit, which is supported by the clinical evidence. There are no current plans to make Ronapreve available for prophylaxis. We also anticipate that further neutralising monoclonal antibody treatments will be submitted for evaluation for a marketing authorisation by the MHRA in the next few months. If approved, these could become available for community treatment or prevention use.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
16th Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to evaluate AZD7442 for emergency use as a preventative treatment against COVID-19; and what are the timelines for its approval.

We continue to monitor the emerging data for AstraZeneca’s long-acting antibody therapy, AZD7442. AstraZeneca are discussing potential approval for the therapy with the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency.

We anticipate that further neutralising monoclonal antibody treatments will be submitted for evaluation for a marketing authorisation by the MHRA in the next few months. These treatments could become available for community treatment or preventative use.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
16th Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to secure stocks of AstraZeneca's treatment AZD7442 as a prophylactic preventative therapy against COVID-19 infection.

We are unable to provide the information requested as it is commercially sensitive.

The Department published a Prior information Notice in Find a Tender Service on 5 October 2021 inviting suppliers to submit an Expression of Interest on neutralising antibody treatments they are developing for treating and preventing COVID-19. The engagement enables the Department to monitor development of all neutralising monoclonal antibodies for treatment and prevention of COVID-19.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
16th Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government why patients who are immunocompromised must (1) test positive for COVID-19, (2) have no detectable antibodies for COVID-19, and (3) have been hospitalised specifically for acute symptoms of COVID-19, in order to access Ronapreve; and what plans they have to end this health inequality between immunocompromised patients and the rest of the population.

The interim clinical policy for Ronapreve (casirivimab and imdevimab) was expanded on 4 November. The clinical policy prioritises the most vulnerable hospitalised patients for whom this treatment will provide the most benefit. Patients are eligible to be considered for Ronapreve if they are hospitalised for management of symptoms of confirmed COVID-19 and negative for COVID-19 antibodies. This is based on clinical trial evidence of efficacy in this group.

Patients are also eligible for Ronapreve if they have hospital-onset COVID-19 and are at high risk of progression to severe illness or if the virus presents a material risk of destabilising a pre-existing condition or compromising recovery. These patients do not need to be negative for COVID-19 antibodies. These conditions are for both immunocompromised and non-immunocompromised patients and reflect clinical trial evidence of efficacy and available supply.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
16th Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have, if any, to test people with immunodeficiencies for their individual responses to COVID-19 vaccinations.

The UK Health Security Agency is working with a range of partners, such as the University College of London, to monitor the effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccinations in clinical risk groups, including those with immunosuppression. The VirusWatch study is underway to monitor antibody response following vaccination among individuals with immunosuppression.

As part of the COVID-19 Immunity National Core Study, the UK Research and Innovation OCTAVE study is examining the effectiveness of vaccines in clinically at-risk groups. This includes vaccine responses in patients with certain immunosuppressed conditions.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
16th Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how much of the £525 million allocated to replace diagnostic equipment has been dedicated to (1) replace outdated MRI scans, and (2) improve access to multi-parametric magnetic resonance imaging, to support the diagnosis of prostate cancer.

This investment is designed to benefit a range of cancer pathways. To date, over £100 million has been allocated to replace outdated magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) machines, of which almost £90 million included hardware able to perform multi-parametric resonance imaging and support the diagnosis of prostate cancer. Replacing aged MRI assets supports the prostate cancer pathway through higher quality imaging, increased availability of MRI and reduced duplication of imaging for patients. This investment is in addition to the routine replacement of MRI machines, which NHS Providers is funding through its annual operational capital allocation.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
15th Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many suspected prostate cancer patients in each local Cancer Alliance have undergone a multi-parametric magnetic resonance imaging scan in England in each year since 2016.

The information is not held in the format requested. While the number of scans of the prostate is collected, this does not represent the number of patients or whether the purpose of the scan was for suspected cancer.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
15th Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many people who are immunocompromised or immunosuppressed have been hospitalised due to COVID-19 in England since 2 September.

The data requested is not held centrally.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
15th Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many multi-parametric magnetic resonance imaging scans have been carried out to investigate cases of suspected prostate cancer in England in each year since 2016.

The information is not held in the format requested. The following table shows data on the number of multi-parametric magnetic resonance imaging scans of the prostate in 2016 to 2020. However, this data includes all such scans and not specifically for suspected cancer.

2016 2017 2018 2019 2020

355 2,035 5,215 7,395 10,780

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
15th Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to restore levels of access to multi-parametric magnetic resonance imaging scans for patients with suspected prostate cancer to pre-pandemic levels.

During the pandemic, access to multi-parametric magnetic resonance imaging scans of the prostate increased. In 2020, 10,780 multi-parametric magnetic resonance imaging scans of the prostate were performed, compared to 7,395 in 2019.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
27th Oct 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what are the (1) planned order quantities, and (2) delivery dates, for the COVID-19 antibody drugs Molnupiravir and Ritonavir; and what is the (a) current, and (b) planned, geographic distribution of Molnupiravir and Ritonavir across England.

The Government has secured 480,000 patient courses of molnupiravir and 250,000 patient courses of PF-07321332 in combination with ritonavir. Information on delivery and distribution of these items is dependent on the companies’ supply chains and receipt of the appropriate marketing authorisations from the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency. We are working with NHS England and NHS Improvement, the UK Health Security Agency and the devolved administrations to ensure that, when available, these treatments will be accessible to those who are most at risk of developing severe disease. Further details will be announced in due course.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
12th Oct 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what is the guidance for an immunosuppressed patient who has contracted COVID-19 receiving a dose of Ronapreve.

The guidance for immunocompromised patients receiving Ronapreve, or casirivimab and imdevimab, is outlined in the Interim Clinical Commissioning Policy: Casirivimab and imdevimab for patients hospitalised due to COVID-19 which is available in an online only format. This policy states that hospitalised patients may be eligible for Ronapreve if they are:

- 12 to 49 years old and determined to be immunocompromised by multi-disciplinary team assessment, or

- 50 years old or over whether or not they are immunocompromised.

In either case, all eligible patients must also have COVID-19 infection confirmed by polymerase chain reaction test or where a multidisciplinary team has a high level of confidence that the clinical and/or radiological features suggest that COVID-19 is the most likely diagnosis, be hospitalised specifically for the management of acute symptoms and be negative for baseline serum anti-spike antibodies against COVID-19.

Immunocompromised patients will not be eligible for Ronapreve if they are children weighing less than 40 kilograms; they are children aged under 12 years old; they have known hypersensitivity reaction to the active substances or to any of the excipients of casirivimab and imdevimab listed in the Summary of Product Characteristics; or they have previously received treatment in hospital with casirivimab and imdevimab at the 2.4 gram (combined) dose or higher.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
4th Oct 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what are the (1) existing stock levels, (2) planned order quantities, and (3) delivery dates, for the COVID-19 antibody drug Ronapreve; and what is the (a) current, and (b) planned, geographic distribution of Ronapreve across England.

We are unable to provide the information requested on existing stock levels, planned order quantities and delivery of Ronapreve, as this is commercially sensitive. A contract is in place for stock held in the United Kingdom which is available to order across the four nations. However, information on the distribution of this stock is not held centrally. Hospitals are able to replenish their supplies of Ronapreve according to their admission rates, with the majority of hospitals in England providing acute care now registered to administer the drug.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
4th Oct 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the announcement that a third COVID-19 vaccine will be offered to people who are immunosuppressed, what guidance has been issued regarding (1) the type of vaccine to be used, and (2) dosage.

For those aged 18 years old and over, the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) advise a preference for mRNA vaccines for the third primary dose, with the option of the AstraZeneca Vaxzevria vaccine for individuals who have received this vaccine previously.. The dosage is a third full dose of the relevant COVID-19 vaccine. The specialist involved should advise on whether the patient fulfils the eligibility criteria and on the timing of any third primary dose. NHS England and NHS Improvement issued Updated JCVI guidance for vaccinating immunosuppressed individuals with a third primary dose on 2 September 2021, on the vaccine preference for patients who are immunosuppressed and the guidance for how to proceed with third primary doses. A copy of the guidance is attached.

In exceptional circumstances, persons who received a mRNA COVID-19 vaccine previously may be offered a third primary dose of the AstraZeneca Vaxzevria vaccine following a decision by a health professional on an individualised basis. For those aged 12 to 17 years old, the Pfizer vaccine remains the preferred choice.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
4th Oct 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether the type of vaccine to be used for the third COVID-19 vaccination for patients who are immunosuppressed will (1) be decided by the doctors treating the patient, or (2) be decided by those administering doses at clinics.

For those aged 18 years old and over, the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) advise a preference for mRNA vaccines for the third primary dose, with the option of the AstraZeneca Vaxzevria vaccine for individuals who have received this vaccine previously.. The dosage is a third full dose of the relevant COVID-19 vaccine. The specialist involved should advise on whether the patient fulfils the eligibility criteria and on the timing of any third primary dose. NHS England and NHS Improvement issued Updated JCVI guidance for vaccinating immunosuppressed individuals with a third primary dose on 2 September 2021, on the vaccine preference for patients who are immunosuppressed and the guidance for how to proceed with third primary doses. A copy of the guidance is attached.

In exceptional circumstances, persons who received a mRNA COVID-19 vaccine previously may be offered a third primary dose of the AstraZeneca Vaxzevria vaccine following a decision by a health professional on an individualised basis. For those aged 12 to 17 years old, the Pfizer vaccine remains the preferred choice.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
9th Sep 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many people in England have been notified that they are eligible for a COVID-19 booster vaccine.

The first COVID-19 booster vaccine was administered on 16 September and as of 20 September 2021, over 1.5 million people in England were invited to receive their vaccine.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
9th Sep 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how (1) NHS hospitals, and (2) GPs, were consulted on the lists of those deemed clinically extremely vulnerable.

The United Kingdom Chief Medical Officers and other senior clinicians developed clinical consensus about which conditions should automatically consider someone as clinically extremely vulnerable. This has been updated throughout the pandemic based on the latest evidence. From April 2020, general practitioners (GPs) and clinicians were asked to review their patient lists and given the ability to add or remove individuals from the Shielded Patient List where appropriate. In February 2021, individuals were identified by the COVID-19 population risk assessment and added to the Shielded Patient List. Significant changes affecting clinically extremely vulnerable people have been communicated with GPs through the Primary Care Bulletin.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
9th Sep 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what conditions qualify someone in England as vulnerable and thus eligible for COVID-19 booster vaccines; and what are the estimated numbers by each condition.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation advises that individuals who received vaccination in phase one of the COVID-19 vaccination programme should be offered a booster vaccine. This includes those aged 50 years old and over and those aged 16 to 49 years old with underlying health conditions that put them at higher risk of severe COVID-19. Information regarding the estimated numbers by each underlying health condition is not held centrally in the format requested.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
9th Sep 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government (1) when, and (2) by whom, the extremely vulnerable in England were notified that they were eligible for COVID-19 booster vaccines.

On 14 September 2021, the Government accepted advice from the independent Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) that individuals who received vaccination in phase one of the COVID-19 vaccination programme in priority groups one to nine should be offered a booster vaccine. The JCVI advise that the booster vaccine dose is offered no earlier than six months after completion of the primary vaccine course and as far as possible be deployed in the same order as phase one. The first booster vaccine was administered on 16 September 2021 and in the week commencing 20 September 2021 over 1.5 million people were invited for their vaccine.

The National Health Service will contact those who are eligible, including those with underlying health conditions that put them at higher risk of severe COVID-19.

On 1 September 2021, the Government also accepted the JCVI’s advice to offer a third primary dose to those with severe immunosuppression at or around the time of their first or second primary dose of COVID-19 vaccination as a precautionary measure. The JCVI will review at a later date whether such persons require a further booster dose following completion of their three-dose primary vaccine course.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
9th Sep 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government which data sets were used to compile the lists of those eligible for COVID-19 booster vaccines in England; and who is responsible for (1) managing, and (2) updating, the lists of those who are vulnerable.

The Joint Committee on Vaccinations and Immunisation has advised that boosters are offered to individuals who received vaccination in phase one of the COVID-19 vaccination programme and the Government has accepted this advice. This includes those aged 50 years old and over and those aged 16 to 49 years old with underlying health conditions that put them at higher risk of severe COVID-19,

For age-based cohorts, NHS Digital holds demographic information regarding English citizens and their dates of birth. NHS Digital identify those who fall into an age-based booster cohort. NHS Digital manage and update this information. Where a person is included due to a clinical condition, general practitioners (GPs) are ultimately responsible for diagnosing people that have those conditions. NHS Digital receive notifications from GP systems to include patients in the ‘at risk’ cohort and are then responsible for managing and updating this information as it is received.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
15th Jul 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Group Accounting Manual 2020-21 published by the Department of Health and Social Care on 19 April, whether they consider that guidance requires in all circumstances (1) a liability to pay interest accruing by virtue of any failure to pay invoices within the 30 day period, and (2) disclosure of such failure whether or not any claim for such liability has been made or settled.

The Public Contract Regulations 2015 Regulation 113(7) requires disclosure of the proportion of invoices paid in accordance with an obligation to pay valid and undisputed invoices within 30 days. The Procurement Policy Note 03/16 (PPN) requires disclosure of both the amount of interest paid to suppliers due to late payment and the amount of interest that the authority was liable to pay, whether or not paid, due to a breach of the Regulations. The Department does not interpret liable to pay in the PPN as a strict financial liability it allows for the possibility that the interest is not paid. The Department does not therefore consider that that Group Accounting Manual requires a liability to pay interest in all circumstances.

The Manual reflects the disclosure requirements of the PPN which states that disclosure of liabilities should include the total amount of any liability to pay interest which accrued by failing to pay invoices within the 30-day period where obligated to do so and the total amount of interest actually paid in the discharge of any such liability.

15th Jul 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Bethell on 6 July (HL964), what plans they have to develop specific clinical guidance for the treatment of people who are immunocompromised or immunosuppressed and become infected with COVID-19.

Specific clinical guidance for the treatment of immunocompromised patients may be developed if research identifies effective treatments in the future.

23rd Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what is the source of their figure that 500,000 adults in England are immunocompromised; whether figures for immunocompromised adults are collated at a UK level; and if so, what are the equivalent figures for (1) Northern Ireland, (2) Scotland, and (3) Wales.

The figure quoted was an early Departmental estimate of the size of the vulnerable immunocompromised cohort in England. This represented patients on the Shielded Patient List with conditions which can be associated with being immunocompromised. The Department is currently working to establish an updated figure for the size of the immunocompromised cohort in England. Information for Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales is not held as this is a devolved matter.

9th Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how they intend to protect immunocompromised individuals from COVID-19 as cases rise in areas of England.

Those who are immunocompromised were either classed as clinically extremely vulnerable and included in priority group four, or as being at increased clinical risk and therefore included in priority group six within phase one of the COVID-19 vaccine programme. Research continues into looking at vaccine efficacy rates in this group.

Work has also continued in developing alternative antiviral and therapeutic therapies. The new Antivirals Taskforce aims to identify effective treatments for patients, including those who are immunocompromised, who have been exposed to the virus to prevent the spread of infection and increase recovery time. Immunocompromised individuals are also a priority cohort for research into therapeutic and prophylaxis treatments such as monoclonal antibody therapies, novel antivirals and repurposed compounds.

A wide range of treatments are currently in clinical trials in the United Kingdom and the Government is monitoring trials worldwide. It is not yet possible to determine the exact patient groups who may be able to benefit, as this will depend on the results of the trials, licensing approval from the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency and deployment planning between the Department, NHS England and expert clinicians. The Government is taking steps to ensure supply of treatments in the event that they are found to be effective at treating COVID-19, including for immunocompromised individuals. The Government continues to monitor the situation and will update the established guidance where necessary.

9th Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have, if any, to reintroduce shielding for clinically extremely vulnerable individuals who (1) are immunocompromised, or (2) have not been protected by two doses of the vaccine, but who are expected to return to work and normal life when the COVID-19 pandemic restrictions are lifted.

Shielding is only introduced where absolutely necessary as the measures are restrictive and can have a negative impact on individuals mental and physical wellbeing. Prevalence levels of COVID-19 and the risk faced by those considered as clinically extremely vulnerable are currently low and as a result the reintroduction of shielding is not required. However, the Government continues to monitor the situation and would not hesitate to reintroduce shielding measures, either locally or nationally, if necessary.

Work is ongoing to better understand the effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccines in the clinically extremely vulnerable population, particularly those who are immunocompromised or immunosuppressed. The results of this work, along with the epidemiological situation at the time, will inform whether any further guidance or support is required for certain groups of clinically extremely vulnerable people.

9th Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the antibody response in immunocompromised individuals following two doses of the COVID-19 vaccine; and if these individuals are adequately protected from COVID-19 as virus infection rates rise across areas of England.

Public Health England (PHE) has been monitoring the proportion of the population with antibodies to natural COVID-19 infection from the start of the pandemic, including in the immunocompromised. PHE is also monitoring the effectiveness of vaccinations in clinical risk groups which will include those with immunosuppression. From the evaluation of the vaccine programme, the data shows that completion of the two dose schedule correlates well with protection from both disease and severe outcomes, including hospitalisation and death including in those who are immunocompromised.

The Virus Watch data supported by the Antibody Testing Team in NHS Test and Trace provides information regarding patients’ antibodies including immunocompromised patients. This would suggest some protection against COVID-19 but it is only one measure of protection and does not look at cellular immunity which may be more important in terms of long-term immunity.

9th Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the antibody response in immunocompromised individuals following trials of a third dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

The COV-BOOST study was commissioned by the Department through the National Institute for Health Research and funded by the Vaccine Taskforce, as part of the National Immunisation Schedule Evaluation Consortium.

This study launched on 19 May and initial findings are expected in September. The study will provide vital data on the impact of a third dose on patients’ immune responses and will help inform decisions by the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation on potential plans for a booster programme from autumn this year.

27th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the number of people hospitalised with COVID-19 and who have had both doses of a COVID-19 vaccine, who are (1) blood cancer patients, and (2) immunocompromised.

The information is not held in the format requested.

24th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what discussions they have had with employers regarding the safety of immunocompromised clinically extremely vulnerable groups in relation to their return to work.

The Government has collaborated with businesses, business representative organisations and trade unions to produce guidance to employers on how they can make workplaces COVID-19 safe, including how they can maintain social distancing and a system of risk management in their workplace. The guidance, Working safely during coronavirus (COVID-19), which is available in an online only format, sets out the guidance for employers to take to operate safely in fourteen different work settings.

Within each work setting, employers should make sure suitable arrangements are in place so that their vulnerable employees can work safely, provide mental health and wellbeing support to staff and they should consider whether clinically extremely vulnerable individuals can take on an alternative role or change their working patterns temporarily to avoid travelling during busy periods.

24th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to study the effect of COVID-19 booster vaccines on immunocompromised groups.

As part of the National Core Studies Immunity Programme (NCSi), UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) is providing initial funding of £1.8 million for 12 months towards the OCTAVE study. The OCTAVE study will examine the effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccines in clinically at-risk groups and will help to inform planning for the booster programme. This includes COVID-19 vaccine responses in patients with certain immunosuppressed conditions, including those with inflammatory disorders, high risk cancer patient groups and patients with severe kidney and liver disease.

Studies into the specific effect of a COVID-19 booster vaccine on certain groups have not yet been established. However, UKRI is providing £3 million towards a new research call to support projects examining one or both of the following areas - the nature and quality of COVID-19 vaccine responses, the mechanisms of immune failure that lead to either COVID-19 re-infection or vaccine breakthrough.

24th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how the participant requirements for the COV-BOOST trial were decided; and why the exclusion criteria for the COV-BOOST trial includes immunosuppressed people.

It is recognised that individuals with immunosuppression may not have a full immune response to vaccination. To fully understand how COVID-19 vaccines respond as a booster dose they must first be studied in people with fully functioning immune systems. However, there is a breadth of research activity being undertaken, including by the National Institute for Health Research and UK Research and Innovation, on COVID-19 vaccine responses in groups of immune suppressed individuals under the National Core Studies’ Immunity and Data and Connectivity programmes.

24th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they intend to order monoclonal antibody therapies as an alternative to COVID-19 vaccines; and if so, whether they plan to do so before AstraZeneca reports the findings of its PROVENT study.

The Therapeutics Taskforce continues to monitor a range of COVID-19 therapeutics, including monoclonal antibodies, aimed at different stages of the treatment pathway. There has been a collaboration with the Vaccines Taskforce to assess the potential of neutralising monoclonal antibodies to provide passive immunity as an alternative to COVID-19 vaccines. We continue to work closely with the cross-agency group RAPID C-19, to assess evidence from clinical trials and delivery to patients, following regulatory approval.

We are in contact with a number of manufacturers to ensure that United Kingdom patients have access to COVID-19 therapeutics as evidence continues to emerge. Clinical trials, such as AstraZeneca’s PROVENT study, will be crucial in providing evidence as to which treatments are most effective.

24th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have (1) to protect groups for whom the COVID-19 vaccine is less effective, and (2) to communicate their remaining risk to the general public.

The Government continues to monitor vaccine efficacy amongst different clinical groups, including studies such as OCTAVE, looking at COVID-19 in people with and without cancer and SOAP, measuring vaccine efficacy in blood cancer patients.

We have been working on finding treatments to reduce mortality, hospitalisations and disease severity. Immunocompromised individuals are a priority cohort for the research treatments such as monoclonal antibody therapies, antivirals, and repurposed compounds.

Although the shielding advice was paused on 1 April, the clinically extremely vulnerable are advised to continue to take extra precautions to keep themselves safe, particularly when meeting with people from outside their household. All clinically extremely vulnerable people will have been offered a COVID-19 vaccination and are strongly encouraged to take up their second dose when it is offered.

If an individual has concerns about the impacts of COVID-19 on their own health condition then they should speak to their general practitioner or specialist clinician.

24th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government when treatments for immunocompromised groups, including monoclonal antibody therapies, will be available as an alternative to COVID-19 vaccines; and which groups will be able to access those treatments.

Immunocompromised individuals are a priority cohort for research into therapeutic and prophylaxis treatments such as monoclonal antibody therapies, novel antivirals and repurposed compounds.

A wide range of treatments in all three of these groups are currently in clinical trials in the United Kingdom and the Government is monitoring trials worldwide. It is not yet possible to determine the exact patient groups who may be able to benefit from these treatments, as this will depend on results released by the ongoing trials when they conclude, licensing approval from the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency and deployment planning between the Department, NHS England and expert clinicians. The Government is taking steps to ensure supply of treatments in the event that they are found to be effective at treating COVID-19, including for immunocompromised individuals.

17th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to allow immunocompromised patients to have their second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine sooner than 12 weeks.

On 14 May 2021, the Government accepted new advice from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) and announced that appointments for a second dose of a vaccine would be brought forward from 12 to eight weeks for the remaining people in the top nine priority groups who have yet to receive their second dose. This is to ensure the strongest possible protection from the virus at an earlier opportunity in response to the B1.617.2 variant of concern, first identified in India. As a result of this, immunosuppressed patients who are waiting to have their second dose may therefore be invited for to book an appointment within this revised timeframe.

There are currently no plans to further reduce the length of time between the provision of first and second COVID-19 doses for people deemed to be clinically immunocompromised as a group. However, for some immunocompromised patients, the second vaccine dose can be given on different timescales. Patients undergoing immunosuppressive therapies, where clinically appropriate, should receive their vaccine doses at least two weeks prior to commencing therapy when their immune system is better able to respond. To maximise vaccine efficacy this may entail offering the second dose between the recommended minimum for that vaccine - three or four weeks after first dose - and the recommended maximum of twelve weeks.

17th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccines in individuals who are immunocompromised because of a health condition or who need to take immunosuppressants due to transplantation.

Public Health England (PHE) is monitoring effectiveness of vaccination in clinical risk groups including those with immunosuppression.

Based on early data from PHE’s monitoring and increasing evidence indicating the potential for a reduction in transmission in those vaccinated, on 24 March 2021 the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) stated that early vaccination data indicate lower protection in vaccinated adults who are immunosuppressed. Those with severe immunosuppression are therefore more likely to suffer poor outcomes following infection and are less likely to benefit from the vaccines offered. The JCVI advised that adult household contacts of adults with severe immunosuppression, aged 16 years old and over, should be offered COVID-19 vaccination alongside priority group six. This will help reduce the risk of infection in those who may not be able to fully benefit from being vaccinated themselves.

The JCVI will continue to review evidence on the use of vaccines in those with immunosuppression and will update its advice as necessary.

17th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to allow immunocompromised people to be prioritised for a third dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.

To ensure ongoing protection for the United Kingdom population, particularly the most vulnerable, we are preparing for a potential booster vaccination programme. While we are planning for several potential scenarios, final decisions on the timing and scope of the booster programme in terms of when to give boosters to which groups and with which vaccines will not be taken until later this year, in line with results from key clinical studies.

Any decision on a booster vaccination programme will be informed by independent advice from the Joint Committee for Vaccination and Immunisation.

12th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Bethell on 23 April (HL14927), whether such guidance also applies to all clinically extremely vulnerable people, including those with chronic kidney disease.

All clinically extremely vulnerable individuals, including those with chronic kidney disease, will be offered a second dose of the vaccine within eight weeks of their first in line with advice from the Joint Committee on Vaccine and Immunisation. Current national guidance for clinically extremely vulnerable people, including those with chronic kidney disease, advises them to follow the guidance in place for the wider population.

12th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what role charities have played in collecting data for asthma and lung conditions throughout the COVID-19 pandemic; and what role they plan for charities who could collect such data to have in any future pandemics.

During the COVID-19 pandemic charities such as the British Lung Foundation and Asthma UK partnership and those working under the umbrella of the Lung Health Taskforce have collected data by conducting patient surveys and producing several reports.

The patient surveys and research have provided the NHS England and NHS Improvement with useful insight into the experience of patients with lung disease during the pandemic, particularly their priorities and level of confidence in accessing services and how remote care can be best used. No assessment has yet been made of what role charities will have during future pandemics in collecting data for asthma and lung conditions.

12th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the response of patients with (1) asthma, and (2) chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, to the COVID-19 vaccination programme; and what assessment they have made of that programme's prioritisation of such patients.

Public Health England (PHE) is actively monitoring effectiveness of vaccination in accordance with the COVID-19 vaccine surveillance strategy. This includes monitoring of clinical risk groups which will include those with chronic respiratory disease as defined in “Immunisation against infectious disease” (the Green Book). PHE has made no assessment of the response to the COVID-19 vaccination programme in people with asthma and/or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

PHE supports the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation which has prioritised people with severe asthma and/or COPD into cohort six together with other people in an at-risk group: “Individuals with a severe lung condition, including those with asthma that requires continuous or repeated use of systemic steroids or with previous exacerbations requiring hospital admission, and COPD including chronic bronchitis and emphysema”. The examples are not exhaustive, and, within these groups, the prescriber should apply clinical judgement to take into account the risk of COVID-19 exacerbating any underlying disease that a patient may have, as well as the risk of serious illness from COVID-19 itself.

12th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Bethell on 27 April (HL14926), whether they have worked with specialists to ascertain the appropriate level of support for clinical extremely vulnerable people after having their COVID-19 vaccine.

The Department continues to engage with specialists, including senior clinicians, to assess vaccine efficacy and ensure that the guidance and support provided to clinically extremely vulnerable individuals is appropriate.

11th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment (1) ministers, (2) the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation, (3) the Chief Medical Officer, and (4) the Chief Scientific Officer, have made of the study 'Safety and immunogenicity of one versus two doses of the COVID-19 vaccine BNT162b2 for patients with cancer: interim analysis of a prospective observational study', published in the Lancet Oncology on 27 April.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) was sent the pre-print article on the efficacy of COVID-19 vaccines on cancer patients, ‘Interim results of the safety and immune-efficacy of 1 versus 2 doses of COVID-19 vaccine BNT162b2 for cancer patients in the context of the UK vaccine priority guidelines’, on 15 March 2021, which was discussed at its meeting on 16 March 2021. The minutes of the meeting will be published in due course.

No specific assessment of the article, published in the Lancet Oncology on 27 April, has been made by the Department, the Chief Medical Officer, or the Chief Scientific Officer.

The Government’s approach towards COVID-19 is informed by a wide variety of scientific information that is under constant review by a variety of organisations. This particular study was referenced on page 17 of Public Health England’s (PHE) “COVID-19 vaccination: information for healthcare practitioners”, which is attached. In light of the study, the guidance states that specialists may advise their patients based on their knowledge and understanding of their immune status and likely immune response to vaccination but should also consider the risk from COVID-19 and the patient’s likelihood of exposure.

PHE’s “COVID-19 vaccination: information for healthcare practitioners” is a document about the COVID-19 vaccination programme thar is intended for healthcare staff involved in delivering the programme. It includes detailed information on the background of the programme, the vaccines (as they become available), vaccine recommendations and eligibility, contraindications and precautions, and vaccine administration issues. A copy of the document is attached.

11th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what qualifications in (1) medical, and (2) scientific, areas the civil servants at the Department of Health and Social Care who support the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation possess.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) is supported by 4.5 full time positions as secretariat to the committee. The secretariat are based in the Immunisation Division in the National Infection Service of Public Health England (PHE) and managed by the Head of Immunisation in PHE.

The secretariat gathers information from a range of sources, including from academic research, PHE and from industry sources. Decisions on information to be shared with the JCVI are made by the secretariat in consultation with consultant epidemiologists, the Head of Immunisation and the Chair of the Committee. Members may also share information with the secretariat or the JCVI. The secretariat are educated to degree level or higher in biological sciences disciplines and are supported by the Head of Immunisation in PHE and a number of consultant epidemiologists and scientists.

11th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many civil servants at the Department of Health and Social Care support the work of the Joint Committee on Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI); which teams those staff are in; who they are managed by; and how they filter information they provide to the JCVI.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) is supported by 4.5 full time positions as secretariat to the committee. The secretariat are based in the Immunisation Division in the National Infection Service of Public Health England (PHE) and managed by the Head of Immunisation in PHE.

The secretariat gathers information from a range of sources, including from academic research, PHE and from industry sources. Decisions on information to be shared with the JCVI are made by the secretariat in consultation with consultant epidemiologists, the Head of Immunisation and the Chair of the Committee. Members may also share information with the secretariat or the JCVI. The secretariat are educated to degree level or higher in biological sciences disciplines and are supported by the Head of Immunisation in PHE and a number of consultant epidemiologists and scientists.

19th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation has commissioned a review of the Sars-CoV-2 for Cancer Patients (SOAP) study.

Ad-hoc meetings of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) are determined by the Chair, in consultation with the secretariat and Department. Ad-hoc committee meetings are called at key timepoints for the development of advice to the Department, outside the usual meeting schedule. Public Health England (PHE) provides the secretariat for the JCVI. Meeting papers are circulated as far in advance as possible. Given the frequency of meetings at this time, papers may be circulated around one to two days prior to the meeting.

The JCVI does not commission research or organisations. Data have been provided to the Committee from a variety of organisations, including OpenSAFELY, QCOVID, University of Oxford, industry representatives and PHE. Published or pre-publication academic research is also considered by the committee. The SARS-CoV-2 for Cancer Patients study has been provided to the JCVI’s members. The JCVI is considering this paper and other academic research into immune responses to COVID-19 vaccines. The JCVI has not commissioned an external review of this paper. Their considerations and advice will be published in the minutes of the meetings and in the Green Book: Immunisation against infectious disease, in due course.

19th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation has (1) considered, and (2) circulated, the Sars-CoV-2 for Cancer Patients (SOAP) study; and, if so, what assessment they have made of it.

Ad-hoc meetings of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) are determined by the Chair, in consultation with the secretariat and Department. Ad-hoc committee meetings are called at key timepoints for the development of advice to the Department, outside the usual meeting schedule. Public Health England (PHE) provides the secretariat for the JCVI. Meeting papers are circulated as far in advance as possible. Given the frequency of meetings at this time, papers may be circulated around one to two days prior to the meeting.

The JCVI does not commission research or organisations. Data have been provided to the Committee from a variety of organisations, including OpenSAFELY, QCOVID, University of Oxford, industry representatives and PHE. Published or pre-publication academic research is also considered by the committee. The SARS-CoV-2 for Cancer Patients study has been provided to the JCVI’s members. The JCVI is considering this paper and other academic research into immune responses to COVID-19 vaccines. The JCVI has not commissioned an external review of this paper. Their considerations and advice will be published in the minutes of the meetings and in the Green Book: Immunisation against infectious disease, in due course.

19th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government which (1) individuals, and (2) organisations, have been commissioned to provide advice to the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation.

Ad-hoc meetings of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) are determined by the Chair, in consultation with the secretariat and Department. Ad-hoc committee meetings are called at key timepoints for the development of advice to the Department, outside the usual meeting schedule. Public Health England (PHE) provides the secretariat for the JCVI. Meeting papers are circulated as far in advance as possible. Given the frequency of meetings at this time, papers may be circulated around one to two days prior to the meeting.

The JCVI does not commission research or organisations. Data have been provided to the Committee from a variety of organisations, including OpenSAFELY, QCOVID, University of Oxford, industry representatives and PHE. Published or pre-publication academic research is also considered by the committee. The SARS-CoV-2 for Cancer Patients study has been provided to the JCVI’s members. The JCVI is considering this paper and other academic research into immune responses to COVID-19 vaccines. The JCVI has not commissioned an external review of this paper. Their considerations and advice will be published in the minutes of the meetings and in the Green Book: Immunisation against infectious disease, in due course.

19th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government who provides secretariat services to the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation; and how far in advance of meetings are papers circulated to its members.

Ad-hoc meetings of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) are determined by the Chair, in consultation with the secretariat and Department. Ad-hoc committee meetings are called at key timepoints for the development of advice to the Department, outside the usual meeting schedule. Public Health England (PHE) provides the secretariat for the JCVI. Meeting papers are circulated as far in advance as possible. Given the frequency of meetings at this time, papers may be circulated around one to two days prior to the meeting.

The JCVI does not commission research or organisations. Data have been provided to the Committee from a variety of organisations, including OpenSAFELY, QCOVID, University of Oxford, industry representatives and PHE. Published or pre-publication academic research is also considered by the committee. The SARS-CoV-2 for Cancer Patients study has been provided to the JCVI’s members. The JCVI is considering this paper and other academic research into immune responses to COVID-19 vaccines. The JCVI has not commissioned an external review of this paper. Their considerations and advice will be published in the minutes of the meetings and in the Green Book: Immunisation against infectious disease, in due course.

19th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government on what basis ad hoc meetings of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation may be called; and who is responsible for making this decision.

Ad-hoc meetings of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) are determined by the Chair, in consultation with the secretariat and Department. Ad-hoc committee meetings are called at key timepoints for the development of advice to the Department, outside the usual meeting schedule. Public Health England (PHE) provides the secretariat for the JCVI. Meeting papers are circulated as far in advance as possible. Given the frequency of meetings at this time, papers may be circulated around one to two days prior to the meeting.

The JCVI does not commission research or organisations. Data have been provided to the Committee from a variety of organisations, including OpenSAFELY, QCOVID, University of Oxford, industry representatives and PHE. Published or pre-publication academic research is also considered by the committee. The SARS-CoV-2 for Cancer Patients study has been provided to the JCVI’s members. The JCVI is considering this paper and other academic research into immune responses to COVID-19 vaccines. The JCVI has not commissioned an external review of this paper. Their considerations and advice will be published in the minutes of the meetings and in the Green Book: Immunisation against infectious disease, in due course.

14th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to changes in guidance about shielding during the COVID-19 pandemic, what plans they have to ensure that immunosuppressed clinically extremely vulnerable people are prioritised for a second dose of a COVID-19 vaccination; and what steps they are taking to ensure that such people are supported prior to any such vaccination.

Immunosuppressed people who are clinically extremely vulnerable are included in priority group four of phase one of the vaccination programme. Everyone who receives a first dose of COVID-19 vaccine should be offered a second dose of the same vaccine within 12 weeks of the first dose. Clinicians can advise their patients based on their knowledge and understanding of their immune status and likely immune response to vaccination and should also consider the risk from COVID-19 and the patient’s likelihood of exposure.

Until further information becomes available vaccinated patients with immunosuppression should continue to follow advice to reduce the chance of exposure. This advice applies whether or not the individual has had one or two vaccine doses as we do not yet have evidence of response in immunosuppressed individuals. Although shielding has been paused from 1 April, immunosuppressed clinically extremely vulnerable people are still advised to take extra steps to keep themselves safe and follow the rules and guidance that are in place for the wider population.

14th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking (1) to reduce the gap between doses of the COVID-19 vaccine for cancer patients, and (2) to protect such patients who have received one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine from exposure to COVID-19.

To optimise the period between doses of the COVID-19 vaccine for all cancer patients, the timing of second dose administration can be varied on clinical advice according to the patient’s individual situation. For immunosuppressed cancer patients, the second dose can be given at different timescales to the 12 weeks routinely in place for most people.

Cancer patients undergoing immunosuppressive therapies, where clinically appropriate, should receive their vaccine doses at least two weeks prior to commencing therapy when their immune system is better able to respond. To maximise vaccine efficacy this may entail offering the second dose between the recommended minimum for that vaccine - three or four weeks after first dose - and the recommended maximum of 12 weeks. Although shielding has been paused, current guidance for clinically extremely vulnerable people including immunosuppressed cancer patients advises them to follow the rules and guidance that are in place for the wider population.

14th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking (1) to address the efficacy of the 12 week gap between doses of the COVID-19 vaccine for blood cancer patients, and (2) to protect such patients who have received one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine from exposure to COVID-19.

To optimise the period between doses of the COVID-19 vaccine for all cancer patients, the timing of second dose administration can be varied on clinical advice according to the patient’s individual situation. For immunosuppressed cancer patients, the second dose can be given at different timescales to the 12 weeks routinely in place for most people.

Cancer patients undergoing immunosuppressive therapies, where clinically appropriate, should receive their vaccine doses at least two weeks prior to commencing therapy when their immune system is better able to respond. To maximise vaccine efficacy this may entail offering the second dose between the recommended minimum for that vaccine - three or four weeks after first dose - and the recommended maximum of 12 weeks. Although shielding has been paused, current guidance for clinically extremely vulnerable people including immunosuppressed cancer patients advises them to follow the rules and guidance that are in place for the wider population.

14th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Sars CoV-2 for cancer patients (SOAP) study on the efficacy of COVID-19 vaccines for cancer patients, what plans the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation has (1) to change, and (2) to apologise for, its statements about (a) the scientific efficacy of the size of study, (b) that study's evaluation of T Cell responses, and (c) that study's lack of consistency of immunological markers, and its conclusion that the study provides no data of relevance for policy recommendations to be made.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) was sent the pre-print article on 15 March 2021, which was discussed at its meeting on 16 March 2021. The minutes of the meeting will be published in due course.

The JCVI has not made any public statements on this study. JCVI has reassured the public that lower immune responses following vaccination do not necessarily infer weaker or absent protection against disease.

14th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation has (1) been sent, and (2) discussed, the peer-reviewed Sars CoV-2 for cancer patients (SOAP) study on the efficacy of COVID-19 vaccines for cancer patients.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) was sent the pre-print article on 15 March 2021, which was discussed at its meeting on 16 March 2021. The minutes of the meeting will be published in due course.

The JCVI has not made any public statements on this study. JCVI has reassured the public that lower immune responses following vaccination do not necessarily infer weaker or absent protection against disease.

12th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether any members of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation have a specialism in haematology.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) secretariat is provided by Public Health England (PHE), as set out in the JCVI Code of Practice agreed by the Department. In 2013 the Secretariat was transferred to PHE from the Department as part of the Health and Social Care Act 2012. Membership is determined on merit and in accordance with the principles of the Code of Practice for Scientific Advisory Committees and the Code of Practice issued by the Commissioner for Public Appointments. The Chair and members are appointed based on their suitability for the role through fair and open competition and assessed against specified criteria. The Deputy Chief Medical Officer Professor Jonathan Van Tam is a medical adviser to the JCVI but is not a member of the Committee.

The JCVI has no budget. Members are not remunerated. However, they are eligible to claim expenses in accordance with PHE’s rules for travel, subsistence and overnight accommodation. The JCVI’s members will not gain financial benefit from their membership. The JCVI cannot commission research but does identify gaps where additional research would be helpful in informing their decision making.

The JCVI’s members have a wide range of specialisms, including vaccinology, immunology, paediatrics, adult medicine, respiratory medicine, geriatric medicine, infectious diseases, epidemiology, virology, public health, mathematical modelling, health economics, general practice and health care associated infections. The United Kingdom health departments agreed to take advice from the JCVI on vaccinations and immunisations as the expert body. The JCVI does not have a haematologist member.

The JCVI’s COVID-19 sub-committee may, in the course of its work, invite experts in certain specialisms not represented in the membership to attend and contribute to meetings, including experts in haematology. The JCVI works closely with the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency and the Commission on Human Medicines, who have an expert working group that includes invited experts in haematology.

12th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the expertise of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation in its ability to address issues relating to COVID-19 vaccines and immunosuppressed people.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) secretariat is provided by Public Health England (PHE), as set out in the JCVI Code of Practice agreed by the Department. In 2013 the Secretariat was transferred to PHE from the Department as part of the Health and Social Care Act 2012. Membership is determined on merit and in accordance with the principles of the Code of Practice for Scientific Advisory Committees and the Code of Practice issued by the Commissioner for Public Appointments. The Chair and members are appointed based on their suitability for the role through fair and open competition and assessed against specified criteria. The Deputy Chief Medical Officer Professor Jonathan Van Tam is a medical adviser to the JCVI but is not a member of the Committee.

The JCVI has no budget. Members are not remunerated. However, they are eligible to claim expenses in accordance with PHE’s rules for travel, subsistence and overnight accommodation. The JCVI’s members will not gain financial benefit from their membership. The JCVI cannot commission research but does identify gaps where additional research would be helpful in informing their decision making.

The JCVI’s members have a wide range of specialisms, including vaccinology, immunology, paediatrics, adult medicine, respiratory medicine, geriatric medicine, infectious diseases, epidemiology, virology, public health, mathematical modelling, health economics, general practice and health care associated infections. The United Kingdom health departments agreed to take advice from the JCVI on vaccinations and immunisations as the expert body. The JCVI does not have a haematologist member.

The JCVI’s COVID-19 sub-committee may, in the course of its work, invite experts in certain specialisms not represented in the membership to attend and contribute to meetings, including experts in haematology. The JCVI works closely with the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency and the Commission on Human Medicines, who have an expert working group that includes invited experts in haematology.

12th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation is able to commission specific research to inform its considerations; and if so, what specific research has it commissioned since 1 January 2020 regarding the effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccines.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) secretariat is provided by Public Health England (PHE), as set out in the JCVI Code of Practice agreed by the Department. In 2013 the Secretariat was transferred to PHE from the Department as part of the Health and Social Care Act 2012. Membership is determined on merit and in accordance with the principles of the Code of Practice for Scientific Advisory Committees and the Code of Practice issued by the Commissioner for Public Appointments. The Chair and members are appointed based on their suitability for the role through fair and open competition and assessed against specified criteria. The Deputy Chief Medical Officer Professor Jonathan Van Tam is a medical adviser to the JCVI but is not a member of the Committee.

The JCVI has no budget. Members are not remunerated. However, they are eligible to claim expenses in accordance with PHE’s rules for travel, subsistence and overnight accommodation. The JCVI’s members will not gain financial benefit from their membership. The JCVI cannot commission research but does identify gaps where additional research would be helpful in informing their decision making.

The JCVI’s members have a wide range of specialisms, including vaccinology, immunology, paediatrics, adult medicine, respiratory medicine, geriatric medicine, infectious diseases, epidemiology, virology, public health, mathematical modelling, health economics, general practice and health care associated infections. The United Kingdom health departments agreed to take advice from the JCVI on vaccinations and immunisations as the expert body. The JCVI does not have a haematologist member.

The JCVI’s COVID-19 sub-committee may, in the course of its work, invite experts in certain specialisms not represented in the membership to attend and contribute to meetings, including experts in haematology. The JCVI works closely with the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency and the Commission on Human Medicines, who have an expert working group that includes invited experts in haematology.

12th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what was the budget of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation for each of the last three years for which figures are available.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) secretariat is provided by Public Health England (PHE), as set out in the JCVI Code of Practice agreed by the Department. In 2013 the Secretariat was transferred to PHE from the Department as part of the Health and Social Care Act 2012. Membership is determined on merit and in accordance with the principles of the Code of Practice for Scientific Advisory Committees and the Code of Practice issued by the Commissioner for Public Appointments. The Chair and members are appointed based on their suitability for the role through fair and open competition and assessed against specified criteria. The Deputy Chief Medical Officer Professor Jonathan Van Tam is a medical adviser to the JCVI but is not a member of the Committee.

The JCVI has no budget. Members are not remunerated. However, they are eligible to claim expenses in accordance with PHE’s rules for travel, subsistence and overnight accommodation. The JCVI’s members will not gain financial benefit from their membership. The JCVI cannot commission research but does identify gaps where additional research would be helpful in informing their decision making.

The JCVI’s members have a wide range of specialisms, including vaccinology, immunology, paediatrics, adult medicine, respiratory medicine, geriatric medicine, infectious diseases, epidemiology, virology, public health, mathematical modelling, health economics, general practice and health care associated infections. The United Kingdom health departments agreed to take advice from the JCVI on vaccinations and immunisations as the expert body. The JCVI does not have a haematologist member.

The JCVI’s COVID-19 sub-committee may, in the course of its work, invite experts in certain specialisms not represented in the membership to attend and contribute to meetings, including experts in haematology. The JCVI works closely with the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency and the Commission on Human Medicines, who have an expert working group that includes invited experts in haematology.

12th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether the Deputy Chief Medical Officers have any formal role in relation to the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation; and if so, what are the roles.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) secretariat is provided by Public Health England (PHE), as set out in the JCVI Code of Practice agreed by the Department. In 2013 the Secretariat was transferred to PHE from the Department as part of the Health and Social Care Act 2012. Membership is determined on merit and in accordance with the principles of the Code of Practice for Scientific Advisory Committees and the Code of Practice issued by the Commissioner for Public Appointments. The Chair and members are appointed based on their suitability for the role through fair and open competition and assessed against specified criteria. The Deputy Chief Medical Officer Professor Jonathan Van Tam is a medical adviser to the JCVI but is not a member of the Committee.

The JCVI has no budget. Members are not remunerated. However, they are eligible to claim expenses in accordance with PHE’s rules for travel, subsistence and overnight accommodation. The JCVI’s members will not gain financial benefit from their membership. The JCVI cannot commission research but does identify gaps where additional research would be helpful in informing their decision making.

The JCVI’s members have a wide range of specialisms, including vaccinology, immunology, paediatrics, adult medicine, respiratory medicine, geriatric medicine, infectious diseases, epidemiology, virology, public health, mathematical modelling, health economics, general practice and health care associated infections. The United Kingdom health departments agreed to take advice from the JCVI on vaccinations and immunisations as the expert body. The JCVI does not have a haematologist member.

The JCVI’s COVID-19 sub-committee may, in the course of its work, invite experts in certain specialisms not represented in the membership to attend and contribute to meetings, including experts in haematology. The JCVI works closely with the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency and the Commission on Human Medicines, who have an expert working group that includes invited experts in haematology.

12th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government which organisation provides the secretariat for the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation; and what processes were undertaken in (1) selecting, and (2) appointing, this organisation.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) secretariat is provided by Public Health England (PHE), as set out in the JCVI Code of Practice agreed by the Department. In 2013 the Secretariat was transferred to PHE from the Department as part of the Health and Social Care Act 2012. Membership is determined on merit and in accordance with the principles of the Code of Practice for Scientific Advisory Committees and the Code of Practice issued by the Commissioner for Public Appointments. The Chair and members are appointed based on their suitability for the role through fair and open competition and assessed against specified criteria. The Deputy Chief Medical Officer Professor Jonathan Van Tam is a medical adviser to the JCVI but is not a member of the Committee.

The JCVI has no budget. Members are not remunerated. However, they are eligible to claim expenses in accordance with PHE’s rules for travel, subsistence and overnight accommodation. The JCVI’s members will not gain financial benefit from their membership. The JCVI cannot commission research but does identify gaps where additional research would be helpful in informing their decision making.

The JCVI’s members have a wide range of specialisms, including vaccinology, immunology, paediatrics, adult medicine, respiratory medicine, geriatric medicine, infectious diseases, epidemiology, virology, public health, mathematical modelling, health economics, general practice and health care associated infections. The United Kingdom health departments agreed to take advice from the JCVI on vaccinations and immunisations as the expert body. The JCVI does not have a haematologist member.

The JCVI’s COVID-19 sub-committee may, in the course of its work, invite experts in certain specialisms not represented in the membership to attend and contribute to meetings, including experts in haematology. The JCVI works closely with the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency and the Commission on Human Medicines, who have an expert working group that includes invited experts in haematology.

23rd Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what public responsibilities are currently held by Professor Dame Sally Davies.

Professor Dame Sally Davies was appointed to the unpaid role of United Kingdom Special Envoy on Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) in 2019. Dame Sally represents the UK internationally on the subject of AMR, engaging bilaterally and multilaterally through international organisations, including the United Nations and the World Bank.

As Special Envoy, the responsibilities include:

- Representing the UK on the United Nations' One Health Global Leaders Group on Antimicrobial Resistance, a global governance structure to maintain public support and political momentum for AMR on the global agenda;

- Working across all Government departments to advise on policy and delivery of a 'One Health' response to AMR, including health, agriculture and the environment;

- Advising the UK Government on possible commitments to take forward on AMR through the UK's G7 Presidency in 2021; and

- Acting as an ad hoc adviser to the UK Fleming Fund, the Global AMR Innovation Fund and other UK Government funded AMR activities overseas.

23rd Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they will publish all the vaccine effectiveness assessments which Public Health England has provided to date to the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation.

Public Health England (PHE) has provided various vaccine effectiveness assessments to the Joint Committee on Vaccine and Immunisation (JCVI). The assessments provided are recorded in the minutes of the JCVI meetings which are published online.

PHE’s monitoring of vaccine effectiveness is also regularly published online.

23rd Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether Ministers have reviewed the decision for Professor Andrew Pollard to recuse himself from all meetings of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation discussing COVID-19.

Ministers have not reviewed this decision. Conflicts of interest are set out in the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation’s (JCVI) code of practice. In order to prevent any perceived conflict of interest it was agreed that the JCVI’s Chair, Professor Andrew Pollard, who is involved in the development of a COVID-19 vaccine at the University of Oxford, would recuse himself from all JCVI meetings related to the virus.

23rd Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether there is a publicly available register of interests for the members of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation usually hold main committee meetings three times a year. Due to the pandemic, the Committee have undertaken ad-hoc meetings to discuss COVID-19. The most recent meeting was held on 16 March 2021. The minutes of this meeting will be published on or before 27 April 2021. Members’ declarations of interest are published as an annex to the minutes. All minutes are published online.

23rd Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how often the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation meets; what was the date of the most recent meeting; and when the minutes of the most recent meeting will be published.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation usually hold main committee meetings three times a year. Due to the pandemic, the Committee have undertaken ad-hoc meetings to discuss COVID-19. The most recent meeting was held on 16 March 2021. The minutes of this meeting will be published on or before 27 April 2021. Members’ declarations of interest are published as an annex to the minutes. All minutes are published online.

23rd Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government on what date the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (1) circulated, and (2) discussed, the published Sepsis Occurrence in Acutely Ill Patients (SOAP) study on the efficacy of COVID-19 vaccines on cancer patients.

The pre-print article containing the published Sepsis Occurrence in Acutely Ill Patients study was circulated to the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation on 15 March 2021 and was discussed at its meeting on 16 March 2021.

4th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government when they expect to be able to assess whether the delay between doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine will have an effect on immunosuppressed people.

The number of individuals with immunosuppression is small relative to the wider population therefore accruing enough data to estimate vaccine effectiveness in specific subgroups will take time. Vaccine effectiveness assessments are reported regularly by Public Health England to the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) to inform vaccine policy recommendations. This will include assessment of vaccine effectiveness in immunocompromised individuals using general practice electronic health record data.

Once sufficient evidence becomes available the JCVI will consider options for a protection strategy for immunosuppressed individuals, including whether any specific vaccine or schedule is preferred in this population.

4th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to monitor the effectiveness of vaccines at preventing transmission of COVID-19, and when they expect to be able to assess whether vaccines are preventing transmission.

Public Health England (PHE) is monitoring the impact of COVID-19 vaccines on a broad range of outcomes, including symptomatic disease, infection, and hospitalisations. PHE has reported early vaccine effectiveness estimates in the elderly and in healthcare workers. These estimates show sustained protection against symptomatic disease, infection, hospitalisations, and mortality beyond 21 days after a single dose of the vaccine.

Preliminary evidence suggests that the COVID-19 vaccines protect against infection, both symptomatic and asymptomatic, at least in the short term, which is likely to lead to reduced transmission. Definitive evidence on transmission requires studies in household contacts of cases and such studies are not expected to be available until late April 2021.

4th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what measures they plan to take to protect immunocompromised, clinically extremely vulnerable people if research evidence demonstrates that COVID-19 vaccines are less effective for those people.

Treatments containing COVID-19 neutralising antibodies have been secured from AstraZeneca to support immunocompromised people who will not be able to benefit from a COVID-19 vaccine.  The antibody treatment currently being developed by AstraZeneca is a combination of two monoclonal antibodies and has the potential to be given as a preventative option for people exposed to the virus and to treat and prevent disease progression in patients already infected by the virus if successful.

4th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to extend (1) shielding, and (2) financial support, for immunosuppressed clinically extremely vulnerable people while research into the effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccines is carried out.

The Government is currently advising everyone considered clinically extremely vulnerable to shield and is providing the guidance and support required to enable this until 31 March. This includes financial support such as the free medicines delivery service and eligibility for statutory sick pay and other benefits for those who are unable to work from home. The Government has also extended the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and Self-Employment Income Support Scheme until 30 September 2021.

Any decision to extend or end shielding measures will be decided upon by the United Kingdom’s Chief Medical Officers and will be based on the latest scientific evidence. Further information will be provided in the coming weeks to all clinically extremely vulnerable people outlining the guidance that they should follow beyond 31 March.

4th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to publish (1) daily, and (2) weekly, data on COVID-19 vaccinations for clinically extremely vulnerable people.

Daily data is not currently available in the format requested. Weekly data published in an online only format includes information on the numbers of vaccinations which were provided to those who are classed as clinically extremely vulnerable.

20th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment and research they have undertaken in support of advice or guidance for (1) the treatment of, (2) evaluating the risk of, and (3) recommending the most effective vaccine for, Follicular Lymphoma.

In 2016, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) published the guideline Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma: diagnosis and management. The guideline covers diagnosing and managing non-Hodgkin's lymphoma in people aged 16 years old and over. The guideline includes specific recommendations related to the management and treatment of different stages of follicular lymphoma. A copy of the guideline is attached.

UK Research and Innovation is funding research on vaccine responses in groups of immune-supressed individual as part of its support for the OCTAVE study in the National Core Studies (NCS) Immunity Programme. The NCS Immunity Programme was established in October 2020 to enable the United Kingdom to use health data and research at scale, recognising the need to respond to near term strategic, policy and operational pressures and ultimately maintain resilience against COVID-19.

7th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of (1) the risks to, and (2) the most effective treatment and vaccination options for, blood cancer patients in relation to COVID-19; and what discussions they have had with health agencies on this subject.

Patients with blood cancer are included in the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation’s priority group four, for individuals who are clinically extremely vulnerable to COVID-19. Patients with blood cancer outside of these diagnoses would be included in priority group six for at-risk groups.

Vaccination of patients undergoing treatment for cancer will be carefully considered by clinicians. The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has published COVID-19 rapid guideline: managing COVID-19 on cancer treatments during the COVID-19 pandemic. A copy is attached. Public Health England (PHE) continues to monitor the impact of COVID-19 vaccines on a broad range of outcomes including symptomatic disease, infection and hospitalisations. NICE and PHE continue to advise the Government on these guidelines, which are reviewed and updated regularly.

7th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what funding they are providing for research into COVID-19 vaccines for medically extremely vulnerable groups.

The Department commissions research through the National Institute for Health Research which is funding a wide portfolio of research on COVID-19 vaccination, including allocating over £50 million specifically to develop COVID-19 vaccines at the University of Oxford and Imperial College London.

In addition, UK Research and Innovation is providing around £2 million to support research on vaccine responses in groups of immune-supressed individuals, including those with inflammatory disorders, high risk cancer patient groups, and patients with severe kidney and liver disease.

5th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what percentage of vaccinations have been used compared to doses provided for each day since vaccinations started.

The information is not available in the format requested.

5th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what recent assessment they have made of the effectiveness of their social distancing guidance during the COVID-19 pandemic; and what plans they have, if any, to change that guidance.

We recognise how hard the impact of COVID-19 pandemic has been on people's relationships with their loved ones. The current guidance on social distancing remains that people should stay at least two metres away from others outside their household, to control the spread of the virus and keeping people safe. This guidance is under constant review to reflect the latest advice from the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies and the latest evidence we have on the transmission of the virus, including new variants. We are also working across government to ensure that guidance relating to specific sectors on social distancing and non-pharmaceutical interventions takes into account the latest advice and information.

5th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what recent assessment they have made of the effectiveness of their standards for personal protective equipment; and what plans they have, if any, to change those standards.

Personal protective equipment (PPE) must be fit for purpose, meeting the necessary essential health and safety requirements of the Personal Protective Equipment Regulations 2018.

Through their on-going work on COVID PPE and market surveillance, the Health and Safety Executive are keeping the relevant PPE standards under review and are in frequent contact with end users, trade associations and economic operators to ensure that the standards remain effective.

5th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether any hospitals have had to change their admission criteria for COVID-19 to reduce in-hospital patient numbers; and if so, which such hospitals have done so.

NHS England are unaware of any hospital that has changed its criteria for admission for COVID-19 patients to reduce in-hospital patient numbers. There have, however, been vast improvements in patient monitoring in the community with the development of virtual wards and roll out of pulse oximeters to patients who have been identified by an appropriate clinician as benefiting from additional monitoring. This has allowed the National Health Service as a whole to respond to the pressures that COVID-19 is currently placing on the health system.

5th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government which (1) clinical commissioning groups, and (2) GP surgeries, were given places for the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine in each week since vaccinations started.

Over 1000 local vaccination services are available to administer the vaccine. The designated site names and regions of these services and their associated clinical commissioning group, are attached due to the size of the data.

28th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether people considered clinically extremely vulnerable to COVID-19 will automatically be considered a priority for a COVID-19 vaccination, regardless of age.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) are the independent experts who provide advice to Government on which vaccine(s) the United Kingdom should use, and which groups to prioritise. The JCVI and the JCVI sub-committee are currently reviewing evidence on clinical risk factors associated with serious disease and mortality from COVID-19, including the risk in those identified as clinically extremely vulnerable. Following a review of the evidence, the Committee will develop advice on risk groups for any future COVID-19 vaccination programme.

27th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the report by the Joint Committee on Vaccinations and Immunisation (JCVI) JCVI: updated interim advice on priority groups for COVID-19 vaccination, published on 25 September, how the JCVI will define which underlying health conditions present the greatest risk of morbidity and mortality from COVID-19; and what evidence it will take into account.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), and the JCVI sub-committee on COVID-19 are currently reviewing evidence on clinical risk factors associated with serious disease and mortality from COVID-19. Following a review of the evidence the Committee will develop advice on risk groups for any future COVID-19 vaccination programme. The evidence the JCVI will consider include data from Public Health England, OpenSAFELY and QCOVID.

The minutes of the JCVI committee meetings and statements on COVID-19 vaccination are published online.

17th Jul 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to support people who are shielding (1) who have been advised by their clinicians to continue shielding, and (2) whose workplaces are not safe to return to, after 1 August.

All employers have been asked to work with the Government to ease the transition back to a more normal way of life for their clinically extremely vulnerable employees. Employers and employees should start having these conversations as early as possible before the guidance is changed on 1 August.


At this time, the Government does not advise clinically extremely vulnerable individuals to attend their place of work if this requires them to leave their home. From 1 August those shielding who are unable to work from home but can work on site, should do so, provided the business is COVID-safe.

17th Jul 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the publication of Our Plan to Rebuild: The UK Government’s COVID-19 Recovery Strategy in May, what plans they have to introduce the “more differentiated approach to risk” for people who are shielding if the COVID-19 infection rate increases.

We are working with a consortium of leading academics and the National Health Service to develop a new risk assessment tool that will allow us to better judge the risk that individuals face from COVID-19. This means that if the shielding policy needs to be started again in the event of an increase in the COVID-19 infection rate or in local lockdowns, we will be able to better target interventions and have a much stronger scientific basis for our approach to risk management for those most at risk.

There is no predetermined infection rate at which shielding may be reintroduced. Any decision to restart shielding would be based on clinical advice at the time taking into account the particular circumstances. We are keeping this under constant review.

17th Jul 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government to what level the COVID-19 infection rate would need to rise for shielding to be re-introduced (1) locally, and (2) nationally.

We are working with a consortium of leading academics and the National Health Service to develop a new risk assessment tool that will allow us to better judge the risk that individuals face from COVID-19. This means that if the shielding policy needs to be started again in the event of an increase in the COVID-19 infection rate or in local lockdowns, we will be able to better target interventions and have a much stronger scientific basis for our approach to risk management for those most at risk.

There is no predetermined infection rate at which shielding may be reintroduced. Any decision to restart shielding would be based on clinical advice at the time taking into account the particular circumstances. We are keeping this under constant review.

17th Jul 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many people were (1) added to, and (2) removed from, the shielding list in (a) April, (b) May, and (c) June; and of those, how many have blood cancer.

The information requested on people on the shielded patients list is shown in the following table.

April

May

June

Additions

979,484

569,516

44,921

Deductions

4,700

178,439

33,832

Source: Shielded Patients List, NHS Digital

People who have been diagnosed with blood cancer are not separately identifiable on the shielded patients list.

11th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the impact of the recent cuts to Overseas Development Assistance on research and preparedness for future pandemics; and how many grants for research into pandemics and global health have been affected by these cuts.

We have prioritised our aid to be more strategic and remain a force for good across the world. Following a thorough review, the FCDO's aid budget has been allocated in accordance with UK strategic priorities against a challenging financial climate of COVID. FCDO will now work through what this means for individual research programmes, in line with the priorities we have identified.

We will focus our research on the core priorities for poverty reduction, including COVID recovery, pandemic preparedness and other international health priorities. Overall, we have committed up to £1.3 billion of aid spending to counter the health, socio-economic and humanitarian impacts of the pandemic. Scientific and technological innovation runs through every one of the seven priority themes for our ODA spend. UK expertise in science, research and development has led to one of the first effective and affordable COVID-19 vaccines. We will remain a world-leading aid donor and across Her Majesty's Government we will spend more than £10 billion this year to address poverty, climate change and global health threats - including ensuring that developing countries have access to COVID-19 vaccines and treatments.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
11th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government when they expect that UK production of vaccines will be sufficient to send doses to developing countries, beyond those doses already arranged through the COVAX framework.

The UK Government recognises that the fight against COVID-19 is a global effort requiring international collaboration, but our first priority is to protect the British public.

We are committed to rapid, equitable access to safe and effective vaccines, and have committed to sharing the majority of any excess doses from the UK supply with COVAX. As the multilateral mechanism set up to support international cooperation on COVID-19 vaccines, COVAX is best placed in allocating any surplus vaccines, and the UK has already committed £548 million to COVAX.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
13th Sep 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to account for the blockchain impact of cryptocurrency use in national emissions calculations; and how this relates to the UK's commitments under the Paris Agreement to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.

The Government has been monitoring developments within the cryptoasset industry, including rising energy usage.

The Cryptoasset Taskforce, comprising HM Treasury, the Financial Conduct Authority, and the Bank of England, considers the impact of cryptoassets and assesses what, if any, regulation is required in response. The Government stands ready to respond to emerging risks or changes in the market and will continue to monitor developments in cryptoassets.

In November 2020, the Chancellor announced that the UK will implement a green taxonomy – a common framework for determining which activities can be defined as environmentally sustainable – which will improve understanding of the impact of firms’ activities and investments on the environment and support our transition to a sustainable economy. More details on the green taxonomy will be announced in due course.

The Government has already taken action to ensure the UK is the world-leading centre for green finance including through announcing an intention to make disclosures aligned with the Taskforce on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) fully mandatory across the economy by 2025, making the UK the first country to do so.

The Government is committed to upholding its pledge relating to the Paris Climate Agreement and have enacted a legally binding target to reach net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. Between 1990 and 2018, the UK reduced its emissions by 43% while growing the economy by 75% – the best performance in the G7 on a per person basis and will continually assess any emerging environmental threats.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
13th Sep 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what estimate they have made of the amount in tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions that cryptocurrencies were responsible for in (1) the UK, and (2) the world, over the last 12 months.

The Government has been monitoring developments within the cryptoasset industry, including rising energy usage.

The Cryptoasset Taskforce, comprising HM Treasury, the Financial Conduct Authority, and the Bank of England, considers the impact of cryptoassets and assesses what, if any, regulation is required in response. The Government stands ready to respond to emerging risks or changes in the market and will continue to monitor developments in cryptoassets.

In November 2020, the Chancellor announced that the UK will implement a green taxonomy – a common framework for determining which activities can be defined as environmentally sustainable – which will improve understanding of the impact of firms’ activities and investments on the environment and support our transition to a sustainable economy. More details on the green taxonomy will be announced in due course.

The Government has already taken action to ensure the UK is the world-leading centre for green finance including through announcing an intention to make disclosures aligned with the Taskforce on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) fully mandatory across the economy by 2025, making the UK the first country to do so.

The Government is committed to upholding its pledge relating to the Paris Climate Agreement and have enacted a legally binding target to reach net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. Between 1990 and 2018, the UK reduced its emissions by 43% while growing the economy by 75% – the best performance in the G7 on a per person basis and will continually assess any emerging environmental threats.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
13th Sep 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to require UK (1) crypto, and (2) fintech, industries, to account for energy use in the production of digital currencies.

The Government has been monitoring developments within the cryptoasset industry, including rising energy usage.

The Cryptoasset Taskforce, comprising HM Treasury, the Financial Conduct Authority, and the Bank of England, considers the impact of cryptoassets and assesses what, if any, regulation is required in response. The Government stands ready to respond to emerging risks or changes in the market and will continue to monitor developments in cryptoassets.

In November 2020, the Chancellor announced that the UK will implement a green taxonomy – a common framework for determining which activities can be defined as environmentally sustainable – which will improve understanding of the impact of firms’ activities and investments on the environment and support our transition to a sustainable economy. More details on the green taxonomy will be announced in due course.

The Government has already taken action to ensure the UK is the world-leading centre for green finance including through announcing an intention to make disclosures aligned with the Taskforce on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) fully mandatory across the economy by 2025, making the UK the first country to do so.

The Government is committed to upholding its pledge relating to the Paris Climate Agreement and have enacted a legally binding target to reach net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. Between 1990 and 2018, the UK reduced its emissions by 43% while growing the economy by 75% – the best performance in the G7 on a per person basis and will continually assess any emerging environmental threats.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
13th Sep 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether managing the high energy impact of cryptocurrencies will be on the agenda at COP26.

The Government’s private finance objective for the upcoming COP26 climate change forum is to ensure that every professional financial decision takes climate change into account. The recovery from COVID-19 will determine the mitigation and adaptation pathways for decades to come.

The finance campaign will provide the conditions for a future that is genuinely greener, more resilient and more sustainable than the past. Action on finance underpins all the other COP campaigns: adaptation and resilience, energy transition, nature and zero-emission vehicles. Without the right levels of finance, the rest is not possible.

The Government has already taken action to ensure the UK is the world-leading centre for green finance including through announcing an intention to make disclosures aligned with the Taskforce on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) fully mandatory across the economy by 2025, making the UK the first country to do so.

Additionally, the Government has committed to the implementation of a green taxonomy.  This will allow us to accelerate our work towards a greener financial sector, by providing a common definition for environmentally sustainable economy activities.

The Cryptoasset Taskforce, comprising HM Treasury, the Financial Conduct Authority, and the Bank of England, considers the impact of cryptoassets and assesses what, if any, regulation is required in response. The Government has been monitoring developments within the cryptoasset industry, including rising energy usage.

The Government is committed to upholding its pledge relating to the Paris Climate Agreement and have enacted a legally binding target to reach net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. Between 1990 and 2018, the UK reduced its emissions by 43% while growing the economy by 75% – the best performance in the G7 on a per person basis and will continually assess any emerging environmental threats.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
13th Sep 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to support the Crypto Climate Accord initiative ahead of COP26; and what steps they plan to take to build support among the UK (1) crypto, and (2) fintech, industries for the cryptocurrency sector to be powered by 100 per cent renewable energy sources.

The Government’s private finance objective for the upcoming COP26 climate change forum is to ensure that every professional financial decision takes climate change into account. The recovery from COVID-19 will determine the mitigation and adaptation pathways for decades to come.

The finance campaign will provide the conditions for a future that is genuinely greener, more resilient and more sustainable than the past. Action on finance underpins all the other COP campaigns: adaptation and resilience, energy transition, nature and zero-emission vehicles. Without the right levels of finance, the rest is not possible.

The Government has already taken action to ensure the UK is the world-leading centre for green finance including through announcing an intention to make disclosures aligned with the Taskforce on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) fully mandatory across the economy by 2025, making the UK the first country to do so.

Additionally, the Government has committed to the implementation of a green taxonomy.  This will allow us to accelerate our work towards a greener financial sector, by providing a common definition for environmentally sustainable economy activities.

The Cryptoasset Taskforce, comprising HM Treasury, the Financial Conduct Authority, and the Bank of England, considers the impact of cryptoassets and assesses what, if any, regulation is required in response. The Government has been monitoring developments within the cryptoasset industry, including rising energy usage.

The Government is committed to upholding its pledge relating to the Paris Climate Agreement and have enacted a legally binding target to reach net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. Between 1990 and 2018, the UK reduced its emissions by 43% while growing the economy by 75% – the best performance in the G7 on a per person basis and will continually assess any emerging environmental threats.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
7th Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether (1) the Cryptoasset Taskforce, or (2) any government department, collects or collates data on the environmental impact of cryptocurrencies; and if so, when any such data will be published.

The Government has been monitoring developments within the cryptoasset industry, including rising energy usage.

The Cryptoasset Taskforce, comprising HM Treasury, the Financial Conduct Authority, and the Bank of England, considers the impact of cryptoassets and assesses what, if any, regulation is required in response. The Government stands ready to respond to emerging risks or changes in the market and will continue to monitor developments in cryptoassets.

In November 2020, the Chancellor announced that the UK will implement a green taxonomy – a common framework for determining which activities can be defined as environmentally sustainable – which will improve understanding of the impact of firms’ activities and investments on the environment and support our transition to a sustainable economy. More details on the green taxonomy will be announced in due course.

The Government has already taken action to ensure the UK is the world-leading centre for green finance including through announcing an intention to make disclosures aligned with the Taskforce on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) fully mandatory across the economy by 2025, making the UK the first country to do so.
Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
7th Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the establishment of the Bitcoin Mining Council, what steps they will take (1) to encourage the use of renewable power and sustainable Bitcoin mining, and (2) to monitor the effectiveness of the Council.

The Government has been monitoring developments within the cryptoasset industry, including rising energy usage.

The Cryptoasset Taskforce, comprising HM Treasury, the Financial Conduct Authority, and the Bank of England, considers the impact of cryptoassets and assesses what, if any, regulation is required in response. The Government stands ready to respond to emerging risks or changes in the market and will continue to monitor developments in cryptoassets.

In November 2020, the Chancellor announced that the UK will implement a green taxonomy – a common framework for determining which activities can be defined as environmentally sustainable – which will improve understanding of the impact of firms’ activities and investments on the environment and support our transition to a sustainable economy. More details on the green taxonomy will be announced in due course.

The Government has already taken action to ensure the UK is the world-leading centre for green finance including through announcing an intention to make disclosures aligned with the Taskforce on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) fully mandatory across the economy by 2025, making the UK the first country to do so.
Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
12th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what estimate they have made of the environmental impact of cryptocurrencies.

The Government has been monitoring developments within the cryptoasset industry, including rising energy usage.

The Government has already taken action to ensure the UK is the world-leading centre for green finance including through announcing an intention to make disclosures aligned with the Taskforce on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) fully mandatory across the economy by 2025, making the UK the first country to do so.

Additionally, the Government has committed to the implementation of a green taxonomy. This will allow us to accelerate our work towards a greener financial sector, by providing a common definition for environmentally sustainable economy activities.

The Government’s private finance objective for the upcoming COP26 climate change forum is to ensure that every professional financial decision takes climate change into account. The recovery from COVID-19 will determine the mitigation and adaptation pathways for decades to come.

The finance campaign will provide the conditions for a future that is genuinely greener, more resilient and more sustainable than the past. Action on finance underpins all the other COP campaigns: adaptation and resilience, energy transition, nature and zero-emission vehicles. Without the right levels of finance, the rest is not possible.

The Cryptoasset Taskforce, comprising HM Treasury, the Financial Conduct Authority, and the Bank of England, considers the impact of cryptoassets and assesses what, if any, regulation is required in response. The Government stands ready to respond to emerging risks or changes in the market and will continue to monitor developments in cryptoassets.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
12th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the environmental impact of cryptocurrencies on companies trying to achieve carbon neutral status.

The Government has been monitoring developments within the cryptoasset industry, including rising energy usage.

The Government has already taken action to ensure the UK is the world-leading centre for green finance including through announcing an intention to make disclosures aligned with the Taskforce on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) fully mandatory across the economy by 2025, making the UK the first country to do so.

Additionally, the Government has committed to the implementation of a green taxonomy. This will allow us to accelerate our work towards a greener financial sector, by providing a common definition for environmentally sustainable economy activities.

The Government’s private finance objective for the upcoming COP26 climate change forum is to ensure that every professional financial decision takes climate change into account. The recovery from COVID-19 will determine the mitigation and adaptation pathways for decades to come.

The finance campaign will provide the conditions for a future that is genuinely greener, more resilient and more sustainable than the past. Action on finance underpins all the other COP campaigns: adaptation and resilience, energy transition, nature and zero-emission vehicles. Without the right levels of finance, the rest is not possible.

The Cryptoasset Taskforce, comprising HM Treasury, the Financial Conduct Authority, and the Bank of England, considers the impact of cryptoassets and assesses what, if any, regulation is required in response. The Government stands ready to respond to emerging risks or changes in the market and will continue to monitor developments in cryptoassets.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
27th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the desirability of requiring those who provide tax and accountancy services in the UK (1) to be appropriately qualified, (2) to undertake Continuing Professional Development, (3) to be subject to robust complaints and disciplinary processes, and (4) to be regulated by an Office for Professional Body Anti-Money Laundering Supervision-supervised professional body in relation to Anti-Money laundering activity; and whether they have any plans to implement any such requirements.

The Government published a call for evidence on raising standards in the tax advice market in March 2020. This explored a range of options to raise standards, including requiring all tax advisers to belong to a professional body. Responses to the call for evidence, including the response from the Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT), were carefully considered. A summary of responses and the Government’s proposed next steps were published in November 2020.

Many respondents to the call for evidence suggested requiring tax advisers to hold professional indemnity insurance (PII) could provide a baseline level of taxpayer protection. The Government is now consulting on the merits of requiring tax advisers to hold PII, including assessing the impacts of this requirement. The consultation closes on 15 June 2021.

Any decisions resulting from the consultation will be announced at a future fiscal event.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
27th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the impact of their recent proposals to require unregulated tax advisers and accountants to hold professional indemnity insurance on the insurance premiums for those who already hold such insurance by virtue of their membership of a relevant professional body.

The Government published a call for evidence on raising standards in the tax advice market in March 2020. This explored a range of options to raise standards, including requiring all tax advisers to belong to a professional body. Responses to the call for evidence, including the response from the Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT), were carefully considered. A summary of responses and the Government’s proposed next steps were published in November 2020.

Many respondents to the call for evidence suggested requiring tax advisers to hold professional indemnity insurance (PII) could provide a baseline level of taxpayer protection. The Government is now consulting on the merits of requiring tax advisers to hold PII, including assessing the impacts of this requirement. The consultation closes on 15 June 2021.

Any decisions resulting from the consultation will be announced at a future fiscal event.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
27th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the recommendation made by the Association of Accounting Technicians in its response, published on 6 August 2020, to the HM Revenue and Customs call for evidence on raising standards in the tax advice market, that anyone offering paid-for tax and accountancy services should be required by law to be a member of a relevant professional body.

The Government published a call for evidence on raising standards in the tax advice market in March 2020. This explored a range of options to raise standards, including requiring all tax advisers to belong to a professional body. Responses to the call for evidence, including the response from the Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT), were carefully considered. A summary of responses and the Government’s proposed next steps were published in November 2020.

Many respondents to the call for evidence suggested requiring tax advisers to hold professional indemnity insurance (PII) could provide a baseline level of taxpayer protection. The Government is now consulting on the merits of requiring tax advisers to hold PII, including assessing the impacts of this requirement. The consultation closes on 15 June 2021.

Any decisions resulting from the consultation will be announced at a future fiscal event.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
14th Dec 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the taxation of carried interest.

The UK’s approach to the taxation of carried interest is in line with the approaches currently taken by other G7 countries.

It is a balanced approach, which recognises that the hybrid nature of carried interest limits capital gains treatment to carried interest relating to long-term investments. The government keeps all taxes under review.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
8th Dec 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the report by the Commissioner for Countering Extremism COVID-19: How hateful extremists are exploiting the pandemic, published in July, what new financial provision and resources are being made available, and to whom, to prevent extremists capitalising on the impacts of COVID-19.

The Government engages closely with the Commission for Countering Extremism on their work on COVID-19 and extremism. After publication of their initial findings in July, we have supported further work undertaken by them on this subject.

The Home Office has undertaken work to counter the spread of hatred and extremism during the pandemic, both online and offline, including working with the National Police Chiefs’ Council on additional hate crime support and community work and working with civil society partners and social media platforms to encourage victim reporting of online hate crime.

The increased use of the Internet as a result of Covid-19 has brought into sharp focus the need to be vigilant against those seeking to exploit the situation to radicalise others into terrorism. We are working closely with tech companies to ensure preventing terrorist use of their platforms continues to be a priority and that companies are responding quickly to any emerging threats. As well as engaging with companies, we are working with our Five Country partners to deliver a joint assessment on the impacts of Covid-19 on the online process of radicalisation, as agreed at the Virtual Five-Country Ministerial meeting in June. We also continue to support efforts by DCMS to work alongside social media platforms to analyse and quickly remove Covid-19 disinformation content.

Baroness Williams of Trafford
Minister of State (Home Office)
8th Dec 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the recommendations in the report by the Commissioner for Countering Extremism COVID-19: How hateful extremists are exploiting the pandemic, published in July.

The Government engages closely with the Commission for Countering Extremism on their work on COVID-19 and extremism. After publication of their initial findings in July, we have supported further work undertaken by them on this subject.

The Home Office has undertaken work to counter the spread of hatred and extremism during the pandemic, both online and offline, including working with the National Police Chiefs’ Council on additional hate crime support and community work and working with civil society partners and social media platforms to encourage victim reporting of online hate crime.

The increased use of the Internet as a result of Covid-19 has brought into sharp focus the need to be vigilant against those seeking to exploit the situation to radicalise others into terrorism. We are working closely with tech companies to ensure preventing terrorist use of their platforms continues to be a priority and that companies are responding quickly to any emerging threats. As well as engaging with companies, we are working with our Five Country partners to deliver a joint assessment on the impacts of Covid-19 on the online process of radicalisation, as agreed at the Virtual Five-Country Ministerial meeting in June. We also continue to support efforts by DCMS to work alongside social media platforms to analyse and quickly remove Covid-19 disinformation content.

Baroness Williams of Trafford
Minister of State (Home Office)
8th Dec 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what progress has been made by the Commissioner for Countering Extremism’s legal review, announced in June, examining the effectiveness of legislation in relation to hateful extremism.

The work of the Commission for Countering Extremism is independent from government. The Government engages closely with the Commission for Countering Extremism on their work. We look forward to considering their upcoming legal review, which we understand is expected to be published in early 2021.

Baroness Williams of Trafford
Minister of State (Home Office)
8th Dec 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they have taken in response to the report by the Commissioner for Countering Extremism Challenging Hateful Extremism, published in October 2019, in the last year.

The Government engages with the Lead Commissioner for Countering Extremism on a regular basis and this includes discussing the report on Challenging Hateful Extremism that was published last year. The Government will respond formally to the report in due course.

Baroness Williams of Trafford
Minister of State (Home Office)
2nd Sep 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what meetings they have held with the insurance industry about the growth in cyber ransom attacks against British businesses; and what assessment they have made of the extent to which insurers are encouraging their clients to pay ransoms.

The Government continues to see a significant increase in the scale and severity of malicious cyber activity globally. This is why the National Cyber Security Strategy 2016-2021 is supported by £1.9billion of transformational investment. Part of GCHQ, the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), is at the heart of this strategy. The Centre provides a single, central body for cyber security at a national level, and has helped over a million organisations become more secure.

Ransomware attacks are increasingly common globally, the Government continues to provide support to British businesses and organisations to try to mitigate the threat. The NCSC continually reviews its advice and guidance to reflect new trends and how companies can protect themselves, as well as providing swift support to organisations which fall victim to ransomware. Additionally, the National Crime Agency’s National Cyber Crime Unit (NCCU) provides the focus for our national response to combating serious cyber criminals. It is using its increased operational resources to deliver arrests and disruption, using the NCA’s enhanced intelligence picture to target criminals where they are most vulnerable. Our priority working alongside the police and the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) is to do all we can to mitigate any harm to the UK.

The legal decision of whether or not to pay the ransom is ultimately a matter for the individuals or organisations concerned. We encourage victims of ransom demands to contact the authorities for support. Organisations are increasingly being targeted by ransomware attacks rather than individuals; this is because criminals can demand more money, and victims are more likely to pay due to reputational damage and desire to maintain the viability of their business for the future.

Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) statistics indicate that in the last financial year for 2019/20 there were 160 recorded ransomware-related breaches, accounting for 6.8% of all cyber-related breaches. The Government currently does not hold any official data on the total cost of ransomware demands.

Baroness Williams of Trafford
Minister of State (Home Office)
2nd Sep 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the origin of ransom cyber attacks against British businesses.

Ransomware attacks are increasingly common globally with international and domestic cyber criminals increasingly viewing UK-based businesses and private individuals as attractive targets. Cyber criminals targeting the UK include international serious organised crime groups as well as smaller-scale, mostly domestic, criminals and hacktivists. While a small number of elite cyber criminals conduct the most serious cyber crimes, cyber crime is highly accessible and the availability of tools and services has lowered the entry level.

The ransomware landscape has changed in recent years, the number of attacks has decreased; however, the attacks appear to be more targeted and demand bigger ransoms. The NCSC and NCA continue to monitor the cyber threat with the UK being a global leader in understanding the threat from cyber crime. NCSC assesses the threat actors behind most large ransomware attacks are Russian speaking cyber criminals.

Baroness Williams of Trafford
Minister of State (Home Office)
2nd Sep 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to protect British companies targeted by cyber ransom attacks.

The Government continues to see a significant increase in the scale and severity of malicious cyber activity globally. This is why the National Cyber Security Strategy 2016-2021 is supported by £1.9billion of transformational investment. Part of GCHQ, the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), is at the heart of this strategy. The Centre provides a single, central body for cyber security at a national level, and has helped over a million organisations become more secure.

Ransomware attacks are increasingly common globally, the Government continues to provide support to British businesses and organisations to try to mitigate the threat. The NCSC continually reviews its advice and guidance to reflect new trends and how companies can protect themselves, as well as providing swift support to organisations which fall victim to ransomware. Additionally, the National Crime Agency’s National Cyber Crime Unit (NCCU) provides the focus for our national response to combating serious cyber criminals. It is using its increased operational resources to deliver arrests and disruption, using the NCA’s enhanced intelligence picture to target criminals where they are most vulnerable. Our priority working alongside the police and the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) is to do all we can to mitigate any harm to the UK.

The legal decision of whether or not to pay the ransom is ultimately a matter for the individuals or organisations concerned. We encourage victims of ransom demands to contact the authorities for support. Organisations are increasingly being targeted by ransomware attacks rather than individuals; this is because criminals can demand more money, and victims are more likely to pay due to reputational damage and desire to maintain the viability of their business for the future.

Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) statistics indicate that in the last financial year for 2019/20 there were 160 recorded ransomware-related breaches, accounting for 6.8% of all cyber-related breaches. The Government currently does not hold any official data on the total cost of ransomware demands.

Baroness Williams of Trafford
Minister of State (Home Office)
2nd Sep 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of research by Emsisoft showing that the amount paid by British companies in ransom to cybercriminals in 2019 was over £200 million.

The Government continues to see a significant increase in the scale and severity of malicious cyber activity globally. This is why the National Cyber Security Strategy 2016-2021 is supported by £1.9billion of transformational investment. Part of GCHQ, the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), is at the heart of this strategy. The Centre provides a single, central body for cyber security at a national level, and has helped over a million organisations become more secure.

Ransomware attacks are increasingly common globally, the Government continues to provide support to British businesses and organisations to try to mitigate the threat. The NCSC continually reviews its advice and guidance to reflect new trends and how companies can protect themselves, as well as providing swift support to organisations which fall victim to ransomware. Additionally, the National Crime Agency’s National Cyber Crime Unit (NCCU) provides the focus for our national response to combating serious cyber criminals. It is using its increased operational resources to deliver arrests and disruption, using the NCA’s enhanced intelligence picture to target criminals where they are most vulnerable. Our priority working alongside the police and the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) is to do all we can to mitigate any harm to the UK.

The legal decision of whether or not to pay the ransom is ultimately a matter for the individuals or organisations concerned. We encourage victims of ransom demands to contact the authorities for support. Organisations are increasingly being targeted by ransomware attacks rather than individuals; this is because criminals can demand more money, and victims are more likely to pay due to reputational damage and desire to maintain the viability of their business for the future.

Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) statistics indicate that in the last financial year for 2019/20 there were 160 recorded ransomware-related breaches, accounting for 6.8% of all cyber-related breaches. The Government currently does not hold any official data on the total cost of ransomware demands.

Baroness Williams of Trafford
Minister of State (Home Office)
2nd Sep 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what is their estimate of the amount paid by British companies to cybercriminals as a result of cyber ransom attacks in (1) 2018, and (2) 2019.

The Government continues to see a significant increase in the scale and severity of malicious cyber activity globally. This is why the National Cyber Security Strategy 2016-2021 is supported by £1.9billion of transformational investment. Part of GCHQ, the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), is at the heart of this strategy. The Centre provides a single, central body for cyber security at a national level, and has helped over a million organisations become more secure.

Ransomware attacks are increasingly common globally, the Government continues to provide support to British businesses and organisations to try to mitigate the threat. The NCSC continually reviews its advice and guidance to reflect new trends and how companies can protect themselves, as well as providing swift support to organisations which fall victim to ransomware. Additionally, the National Crime Agency’s National Cyber Crime Unit (NCCU) provides the focus for our national response to combating serious cyber criminals. It is using its increased operational resources to deliver arrests and disruption, using the NCA’s enhanced intelligence picture to target criminals where they are most vulnerable. Our priority working alongside the police and the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) is to do all we can to mitigate any harm to the UK.

The legal decision of whether or not to pay the ransom is ultimately a matter for the individuals or organisations concerned. We encourage victims of ransom demands to contact the authorities for support. Organisations are increasingly being targeted by ransomware attacks rather than individuals; this is because criminals can demand more money, and victims are more likely to pay due to reputational damage and desire to maintain the viability of their business for the future.

Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) statistics indicate that in the last financial year for 2019/20 there were 160 recorded ransomware-related breaches, accounting for 6.8% of all cyber-related breaches. The Government currently does not hold any official data on the total cost of ransomware demands.

Baroness Williams of Trafford
Minister of State (Home Office)
14th May 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the impact of COVID-19 on cybercrime rates; and what plans they have to address any rise in cybercrime linked to COVID-19.

The Home Office and its operational partners continue to monitor and respond to the cyber crime threat during the COVID-19 pandemic. Current assessments have not indicated an increase in reporting linked to COVID-19. However, cyber criminals are exploiting COVID-19 as an unparalleled opportunity to conduct criminal activity using social engineering, capitalising on people’s anxieties about the pandemic.

On 21 April, the Government launched a revised Cyber Aware campaign to coincide with the launch of the NCSC’s new Suspicious Email Reporting service. The NCA have also launched an advertorial on the popular Games Radar website to deliver PREVENT messaging during the COVID-19 pandemic as the public spend more time online. The advert is designed to deter young people away from becoming involved in cyber-criminality.

We have also recently launched a gov.uk page on coronavirus-related fraud and cybercrime. The page includes easy-to-follow steps for people to better protect themselves and signposts other relevant advice and tips. It can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-fraud-and-cyber-crime.

Baroness Williams of Trafford
Minister of State (Home Office)