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northern ireland assembly

Thursday 25 March 2010


Written Ministerial Statement

The content of this written ministerial statement is as received at the time from the Minister. It has not been subject to the official reporting (Hansard) process.

Health, Social Services and Public Safety

Swine Flu Review: Independent Chair

Published on Thursday 25 March 2010

The Minister of Health, Social Services and Public Safety (Mr McGimpsey): I am pleased to announce that an independently chaired review of the UK response to the 2009 H1N1 (“swine flu”) pandemic has been established. This review has been jointly commissioned, and the Chair appointed, by all four of the UK Health Ministers. The review will be chaired by Dame Deirdre Hine. The review team are situated within the Cabinet Office, which will lead the review with the full cooperation of all the UK Health Departments.

As part of the normal procedure following a major emergency response, the review will consider the effectiveness of the UK response to the 2009 pandemic and make recommendations to inform planning for any future pandemic. We expect the review team to conduct a paper review of all the key elements of the response and to interview key individuals involved. However, it will be for Dame Deirdre to determine precisely how she wishes to proceed.

The Chair will start work as soon as possible. In order that the review can inform future pandemic planning and to ensure that its findings are placed in the public domain as soon as possible, Ministers have asked that the review complete its work in time to publish a report before summer recess in any of the four nations of the UK.

I would like to take this opportunity to express my thanks to all of those who have assisted and advised on the response to the swine flu pandemic.