British Columbia

B.C. government launches independent review of its pandemic response

The province says the review will better inform preparations and responses to future emergencies and is accepting public feedback online until April 20.

Province is accepting public feedback online until April 20

A health-care worker hands out COVID-19 rapid tests to people at a rapid test distribution centre in Surrey, B.C., on Jan. 18, 2022. The province is now asking for public feedback on its handling of the pandemic. (Ben Nelms/CBC)

British Columbians have an opportunity to tell the provincial government how they think the pandemic was handled as part of an independent review on its response announced Wednesday.

The government said it is interested in hearing how its agencies worked together during the COVID-19 crisis to better inform preparations for any future emergencies.

People can participate by providing feedback online until April 20 and letting the B.C. government know how they or their organization or business fared during the pandemic.

The review will look specifically at what aspects of preparedness, communications and implementation worked well and what changes were made to improve operations as the pandemic evolved in order to determine what improvements can be made to better prepare for the possibility of another pandemic.

The government says it will release a report with a summary of these findings in the fall.

The review team appointed by Mike Farnworth, the minister of public safety and solicitor general, is made up of three former senior leaders of the B.C. Public Service, including former deputy minister Bob de Faye, public policy professional Dan Perrin and former deputy minister Chris Trumpy.

The scope of the review, according to the government, does not include an assessment of the public policy decisions made by the B.C.NDP to deal with the consequences of the pandemic and decisions made by the provincial health officer.

Decisions made about economic recovery, such as supports for small businesses and families will not be part of the review, but it will look at how those decisions were made.

The survey takes about 10 to 20 minutes and is available here in multiple languages.

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