/Chris Whitty Covid Inquiry – ‘we acted too late’
Chris Whitty Covid Inquiry

Chris Whitty Covid Inquiry – ‘we acted too late’

Chris Whitty Covid Inquiry – “we acted too late”

Live Chris Whitty gives evidence to Covid Inquiry

Professor Sir Chris Whitty, chief medical officer for England, is giving evidence at the UK Covid inquiry.

He says that “with the benefit of hindsight, we went a bit too late” during the first Covid wave in 2020.

Professor Whitty also rejects that he warned against lockdowns – saying he only made sure the downsides of such actions were clear.

Yesterday,  Sir Patrick Vallance privately referred to Sir Chris Whitty as “a delayer” after “palpable tension” between the two scientific advisers over lockdown policy emerged, the Covid Inquiry has heard.

Sir Patrick, the chief scientific adviser during the pandemic, said he wanted to introduce the first national lockdown more quickly than Sir Chris, who was worried about the number of deaths from the knock-on effects of shutting down the country.

That led to “friction” between the two men, who regularly stood either side of Boris Johnson, then the prime minister, at daily press conferences to keep the public informed.


This an independent public inquiry set up to examine the UK’s response to and impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. Also learn lessons for the future. The Inquiry Chaired by Baroness Heather Hallett, a former Court of Appeal judge.


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