Inquiry announces hearing structure and sequence

The Scottish COVID-19 Inquiry is adopting a thematic approach to its investigations and hearings, giving priority to evidence from people most impacted by the pandemic in Scotland.

The themes are health and social care; education and young people; and finance, business and welfare.

For each of these themes, the Inquiry will first look at the impact of the pandemic, then the implementation of measures, and finally, key decision-making.

The first set of impact hearings will deal with health and social care. Arrangements are being made to invite groups granted core participant status regarding health and social care issues to an Inquiry Planning Meeting with the Chair and senior legal team in late April/early May.

This virtual session will allow the Inquiry team to give more information on plans for public impact hearings to begin this autumn and provide an opportunity for discussion.

The Inquiry will hold its first public hearing this summer, as a ‘scene-setting’ evidence session on the epidemiology of COVID-19 to provide a factual background to support all further investigations and hearings.

Lord Brailsford, Chair of the Inquiry, said: “I am pleased to announce the structure and sequencing of our hearings and how we intend to establish the facts of the response to the pandemic in Scotland.

“Our approach seeks to bring the experiences of people in Scotland to the forefront of the Inquiry’s investigations, ensuring the human impact of the pandemic is captured.”

The evidence gathered at public hearings will inform the Inquiry’s ongoing work across its investigative portfolios, the issues examined at future hearings, and its reports.