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Baroness Harding to face coronavirus joint inquiry on test and trace performance

6 November 2020

MPs to question Baroness Harding about the performance of the NHS Test and Trace programme against the backdrop of a rising number of positive Covid-19 cases. 

Purpose of the session

The fourth session of the joint inquiry Coronavirus: Lessons Learnt will consider the establishment of NHS Test and Trace, the growth of laboratory capacity and turnaround times for returning test results. 

Leading immunologist Professor Sir John Bell and President of the Royal College of Pathologists Professor Jo Martin will also give evidence, as well as distinguished experts Professor Dame Anne Johnson and Professor Sir Chris Ham. MPs will focus on the effectiveness of contact tracing, based on experts’ understanding of the virus, as well as the benefits of centralised or local approaches and adherence to self-isolation.  

Expansion of the types of tests available, including new rapid testing and prospects for mass testing within ‘Operation Moonshot’ will also be discussed. 

Baroness Harding previously appeared before the Health and Social Care Committee in its inquiry into the management of the coronavirus outbreak in June shortly after the launch of the Test and Trace programme, and gave evidence to the Science and Technology Committee in September as part of its inquiry into UK science, research and technology capability and influence in global disease outbreaks


Tuesday 10 November

At 9.05am

Panel 1 

  • Professor Dame Anne Johnson, Professor of Infectious Disease Epidemiology, University College London 
  • Professor Sir Chris Ham, Chair, Coventry and Warwickshire Health and Care Partnership, former Chief Executive, The King's Fund
  • Professor Dominic Harrison, Director of Public Health and Wellbeing, Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council

From 9.45am

Panel 2

  • Professor Sir John Bell, Regius Professor, University of Oxford
  • Professor Jo Martin, President, Royal College of Pathologists
  • Professor Gerard Krause, Head of Department for Epidemiology, Helmholtz Centre for Infection Research and Director, Institute for Infectious Disease Epidemiology, TWINCORE, Hanover

From 10.30am

Panel 3

  • Baroness Dido Harding, Executive Chair of NHS Test and Trace programme, Department of Health and Social Care 
  • Dr Susan Hopkins, Chief Medical Adviser, NHS Test and Trace 

This session will be jointly chaired by Rt Hon Greg Clark MP and Rt Hon Jeremy Hunt MP.

Further information

Image: Pixabay