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THE general public and organisations are being invited to submit evidence on how the pandemic has affected them for the Health Foundation’s COVID-19 impact inquiry, due to be published next summer.

The Health Foundation aims to provide a comprehensive analysis of the factors that will need to be addressed to put the UK back on the road to recovery and ensure that everyone can enjoy the same opportunities for good health and wellbeing.

Submissions on aspects of the pandemic where there is less evidence in the public domain at present, and research that hasn’t yet been published elsewhere, are particularly wanted.

The inquiry is specifically interested to receive evidence that answers the following questions:

  • What was the impact of people’s existing health status on their experience of COVID-19?
  • How did people’s individual, social and economic circumstances affect their experience of COVID-19?
  • What was the impact of government and societal response (eg lockdown) to the pandemic on people’s health?
  • How has the government and societal response affected the social and economic circumstances that are likely to have implications for people’s long-term health?

And there are several key themes that the inquiry is interested in:

  • disabled people
  • carers (formal and informal)
  • mental health
  • minority ethnic communities
  • young and older people
  • gendered perspectives
  • care home and nursing home residents
  • key workers including health and social care workers
  • those facing new inequalities e.g. working mothers, self-employed
  • vulnerable groups e.g prisoners, homeless people and those shielding
  • those experiencing challenges due to digital exclusion
  • those living with the impacts of ‘long COVID’.

Clare Moriarty, chair of the COVID-19 impact inquiry, said: “It is not just the virus that has affected people’s health but also measures introduced in response.

“People have lost jobs and income, seen medical treatment cancelled and been asked to stay indoors for weeks on end. Children and young people have missed out on their education and opportunities to build social lives.

“Across the country, people’s health and mental wellbeing has been affected and, as this research shows, the pandemic is intensifying and amplifying existing health inequalities.

“The COVID-19 impact inquiry aims to join up all these different issues to build a bigger picture of the impact the pandemic has had on our communities across the UK.

“We believe the findings will provide Government with a solid evidence base to inform their recovery policies and tackle these very big issues of inequality to ensure that everyone’s health and wellbeing is protected in the long term.”

  • The inquiry will be informed by an expert advisory panel led by Dame Clare Moriarty, a former civil service Permanent Secretary, and will include Sir Michael Marmot, Professor of Epidemiology at University College London, Sarah Davidson, CEO of the Carnegie UK Trust, and Lord Victor Adebowale, non-Executive Director of Nuffield Health and previous CEO of Turning Point, among others.