Jonathan Ashworth has criticised the government’s “incompetence” after the Health Secretary told the Commons that he does not know how many people could be unknowingly spreading Covid due to the Excel blunder.
Matt Hancock made the admission while being grilled on the issue by the Shadow Health Secretary during a parliamentary session of health and social care questions this afternoon.
Ashworth asked: “Given the ONS has today said that deaths have increased for three weeks in a row, given the rising prevalence of the virus, can he understand the upset and anger over the Excel spreadsheet blunder?
“And can he tell us today what he couldn’t tell us yesterday: of the 48,000 contacts – not the index cases, the contacts – how many have been traced, and how many are now isolating?”
The Health Secretary replied: “We have obviously been continuing to contact both the index cases and the contacts. Of course, the total number of contacts depends on how many contacts each index case has…