The delay of a report looking into the impact of Covid-19 on the BAME community has sparked outrage amid accusations of a cover-up.
Sky News reporter Inzamam Rashid revealed last night that the report has been held back amid fears its contents could stoke racial tensions.
A source told him that the “situation in America” means “the government won’t be able to put this out without concrete and solid next steps”.
The response has provoked outrage, with MP Marsha de Cordova saying: “It is unacceptable that the PHE review has been delayed again.
“There is a gross irony in delaying the release of a report into the unequal suffering of the BAME community, on the basis of global events that relate to the suffering of black communities around the world.”
Dr Chaand Nagpaul, BMA council chair, said: “The government’s commissioned review by Public Health England needs to be concluded as soon as possible in order for us to make sense of why this dreadful virus is impacting so adversely on the BAME community and, most importantly, what needs to be done to urgently protect them.”
The Department of Health and Social Care denied the delay in the report’s release was linked to events in the US.
A spokesperson said: “Ministers received initial findings today (Monday). They are being rapidly considered and a report will be published this week. It is not true to say this has been delayed due to global events.”
Public Health England said in a statement: “The review will be published shortly.”