Covid-19 Response

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 3:37 pm on 18th May 2020.

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Photo of Matthew Hancock Matthew Hancock Secretary of State for Health and Social Care 3:37 pm, 18th May 2020

The hon. Lady is absolutely right; this is an incredibly important subject, both, as she says, during the crisis and thereafter. We have a study under way, which Public Health England is conducting, on the impact of all sorts of different conditions on the likelihood that covid-19 will hit someone hard. It is true that there is a link to levels of deprivation, in the same way as one of the strongest factors, other than age, is obesity—that needs to be investigated. We have also seen a bigger impact on people from minority ethnic backgrounds. All these things need to be studied. Levelling up and closing that health inequality gap is an incredibly important part of the Government’s agenda for recovering from this terrible disease.