Question to the Department of Health and Social Care:
To ask Her Majesty's Government on what dates in 2020 the initial audits were first conducted of the need for protective personal equipment in (1) the NHS, and (2) care services.
The Government stockpiled medicines and consumables including personal protective equipment (PPE) for the National Health Service and social care for a reasonable worst-case influenza pandemic as outlined in the UK Influenza Pandemic Preparedness Strategy 2011. COVID-19 is a different disease with a higher hospitalisation rate.
Forecasts for the need for PPE to respond to the COVID-19 outbreak have been continuously updated in line with modelling based on the prevalence and impact of the virus and the guidance on how PPE should be used. This guidance has itself been updated to reflect emerging scientific evidence about transmission routes and appropriate methods to prevent transmission and the prevalence of COVID-19 in the community.