BBC Panorama investigation raises questions about PPE pandemic stock for Welsh Government
Plaid Cymru Leader Adam Price has called on the Welsh Government to reveal how much PPE it had in its stockpile prior to the Coronavirus crisis after an investigation by BBC Panorama revealed that the Westminster government failed to buy crucial protective equipment to cope with a pandemic.
According to the investigation, “vital items” including gowns, visors, swabs and body bags were left out of the stockpile when it was set up in 2009 – with “millions” of FFP3 respirator masks also “unaccounted for”.
The investigation also reported that the Westminster Government ignored warnings from its own advisers about the lack of equipment.
Plaid Cymru Leader Adam Price said “the negligence” of the Westminster government had been “laid bare” and strongly criticised them for “utterly failing” to prepare for a pandemic.
However the Plaid Cymru Leader said that the Welsh Government should now reveal how much PPE they had in their pandemic stockpile prior the Coronavirus crisis and whether they were prepared or not.
Mr Price also pressed the Welsh Government to confirm whether they had enough PPE to meet the demand and to “protect” health and care staff.
The Plaid Cymru Leader said the priority should be ensuring that frontline workers were kept safe by having access to the “correct protective equipment” they need. Mr Price said not to do so would be a “dereliction of duty of the worst kind”.
Plaid Cymru Leader Adam Price said,
“The negligence of the Westminster government has been laid bare for all to see. They failed to prepare properly for an inevitable pandemic and this failure has put the lives of front line health and care workers needlessly at risk.
“Morriston hospital in Swansea was included in the BBC’s Panorama investigation as one of the hospitals who suffered due to a lack of PPE. In light of these revelations, the Welsh Government must urgently tell us how much PPE they had in their pandemic stockpile prior to the Coronavirus crisis. Were they at all prepared for the pandemic?
“And do they have enough PPE now to meet the demand and to protect our health and care staff?
“The priority must be ensuring our front line workers are kept safe by having access to enough of the correct protective equipment they need. Not to do so would be a dereliction of duty of the worst kind.