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UKHSA was given £2 billion in funding for COVID but did not have the “resources” to review the evidence on Non-Pharmaceutical Interventions

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At the end of September, UKHSA published a “rapid mapping review” which identifies and categorises evidence on the effectiveness of non-pharmaceutical interventions (“NPIs”) to reduce covid-19 transmission.

However, as Professor Carl Heneghan and Dr. Tom Jefferson noted, UKHSA did not extract nor appraise the evidence as it claimed it did not have the resources.  Whether a lack of “resources” means a lack of cash or expertise or both is not clear.

So, the two researchers undertook to review the 100 models forming the backbone of the UKHSA’s mapping review.As we feel sorry for the poor old UKHSA, we have done the appraisal for it,” they wrote.

Read more: UKHSA’s 100 Covid Models Are Not Science, Prof. Carl Heneghan and Dr. Tom Jefferson, 18 October 2023

Now Prof. Heneghan and Dr. Jefferson follow up on their review by looking at how it is that UKHSA claims it does not have the “resources” to appraise the evidence for themselves.

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Should we start a collection for the UKHSA? Let’s pass the plate around

By Tom Jefferson And Carl Heneghan

Some of you will recall that the UK Health Security Agency (“UKHSA”) claimed not to have the resources to carry out a systematic appraisal of the 100 models forming the backbone of the UKHSA’s mapping review called ‘Effectiveness of non-pharmaceutical interventions to reduce transmission of Covid-19 in the UK’. 

We have documented their dreadful reviews that include the wrong type of evidence to address the question but still made their way to Parliament as evidence of effectiveness.

So, as we were swimming in cash, lounging by the pool in our villas in the Caribbean, we did the job for them. 

We found that the 100 models were not science, but a mass of assumptions and unverifiable statements which reflected the publication frenzy that went off the boil as soon as attention moved away from Covid. 

According to Mr. Hancock, when mask mandates were introduced (to please Ms. Sturgeon), there was no strong evidence that they made any difference to the transmission of any viral respiratory agent. This still holds today.

So, the 100 models were retrofitted evidence to try and justify a national policy based on the distortion of the precautionary principle.

We think it likely that a little bit of cash will be found for friends of the UKHSA to find that: “Well, maybe, if we do this or that analysis a bit of an effect will be found”.

But do the UKHSA have a few pennies after all to look at the evidence behind a national policy that muzzled most Britons for nigh on two years? Here is a summary of the UKHSA funding for 2022-23:

Maybe a few pennies could come from the over £2 billion of ring-fenced covid funding?

Our previous work showed we are no strangers to wasting money: “Hundreds of millions of pounds may have been wasted on a drug for influenza that works no better than paracetamol, a landmark analysis has said. By 2014, The UK had spent £473m on Tamiflu, which is stockpiled by governments globally to prepare for the dreaded ‘F’ pandemic.”  

However, we find it strange that there is such a ring-fenced sum for a pathogen which is now endemic, but maybe the UKHSA knows something we do not. 

With such a huge drain on the exchequer and the input provided for evidence-free policies, is everything all right then? Not according to the auditor (page 96 of the report):

More money is needed then. To fund what? More models?

The report may be interesting if somewhat long at 127 pages. There is a helpful introduction by the Chair of UKHSA, Mr. Peters. Let’s hope he knows a little more about public health than his predecessor at Public Health England, Mr. Selbie, who described his knowledge at the Covid Inquiry as enough to fill the back of a postage stamp. Second-class stamp, that is.

About the Authors

Carl Heneghan is a professor of Evidence-based Medicine at the University of Oxford, Director of the Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine (“CEBM”) and NHS Urgent Care general practitioner (“GP”) who regularly appears in the media. Tom Jefferson is a clinical epidemiologist and a Senior Associate Tutor at the University of Oxford.  Together they write articles on a Substack page titled ‘Trust the Evidence’.

Featured image: Dame Jenny Harries, Chief Executive of UKHSA (left).  Source: The Telegraph

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24 days ago

Every Municipal (terrorist) Government will/is shall collapse worldwide.
This is already happening with the UK CORPORATION that masquerades as a legitimate Government. Some see it, most don’t.
Some have prepared for the imminent collapse, most are still in the land of La La.

steven j close
steven j close
24 days ago

Where has the listen option gone

Brin Jenkins
Brin Jenkins
Reply to  steven j close
24 days ago

You may have a highlight and speak option on your Computer.

Brin Jenkins
Brin Jenkins
24 days ago

Remove all funding from scoundrels able to tax and punish us at will. A short stay in the Tower is called for.