Disease Control: Protective Clothing

Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered on 1st June 2020.

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Photo of Baroness Thornton Baroness Thornton Shadow Spokesperson (Health)

To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of whether the UK's stockpile of personal protective equipment has decreased over the last ten years and, if so, what financial saving was made as a result.

Photo of Baroness Thornton Baroness Thornton Shadow Spokesperson (Health)

To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the extent to which stockpiles of personal protective equipment were replaced by 'just in time' supply arrangements over the past ten years.

Photo of Lord Bethell Lord Bethell The Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Health and Social Care

The Department’s advisory Committee for New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Threats Advisory Group (NERVTAG) makes recommendations to the Government on what medicines and clinical consumables should be stockpiled for pandemic influenza preparedness including relevant scientific information that is used for estimating target stock levels. No assessment has been made of variance in the spend on personal protective equipment (PPE) over the past 10 years, therefore we are unable to estimate the financial savings made as a result.

A small portion of the required FFP3 respirators and gloves have ‘just in time’ arrangements in place. The majority of the stockholding for these products and all other PPE is held in the stockpile on a ‘just in case’ basis.

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