Business of the House

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 11:25 am on 4th February 2021.

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Photo of Jacob Rees-Mogg Jacob Rees-Mogg Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons 11:25 am, 4th February 2021

I am afraid to say that was a completely absurd question. The pressure on the NHS is being reduced because of the work of Test and Trace. We have the capacity to process more than 800,000 tests a day, and so far more than 20 million people in this country have been tested at least once. This is an essential part of how we are tackling the pandemic and the hon. Gentleman, as always, pooh-poohs it. Typical socialist: he pooh-poohs the private sector. Without the private sector, we would not be rolling out the vaccines as fast as we are—that is another key part of our defence and action against the pandemic. Yes, the NHS is a fundamental part of our healthcare—of course it is—but the vaccines were produced by and are being produced and manufactured by private companies. We should recognise the enormous contribution that free markets have made in helping us and not pooh-pooh them.