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A Tortoise File

Covid Inquiry – The Verdict

The past nine months have been marked by trial, error and tragedy, so we held an inquiry into what went wrong – and right

Covid Inquiry – The Verdict

First published
Monday 14 December 2020

Last updated
Friday 18 December 2020

Why this story?

Nine months into the pandemic, the second wave is breaking slower than the first. Infection and death rates are stubbornly high. Christmas get-togethers have been allowed that may yet nudge them higher. Britons are being vaccinated already, but the signs are that vital lessons from the first wave and from other countries – on testing, tracing, isolating and protecting – are not guiding the UK government’s Covid strategy as they should be.

In fact, the question of whether there is a strategy at all is hard to answer. The past nine months have been marked more by trial, error and tragedy, so we held an inquiry into what went wrong – and right. The point is to identify mistakes before they are repeated, and good ideas while there’s still time to use them. This week’s File is a digest of our findings. Giles Whittell, editor

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