Plans for developing the NPC were underway well before the Covid-19.  That event, and the speed with which societal norms had to be changed after the pandemic struck, demonstrated clearly the need for the Commission’s work, and the first meeting of the National Preparedness Commission was held in November 2020.

At the same time, the foundations were being laid for a stronger national focus on preparedness.  In December 2020 the National Risk Register was published by the Government, highlighting 38 major risks facing the UK, and in July 2021 the Rt Hon Penny Mordaunt MP, Paymaster General, launched a call for evidence on a national resilience strategy, to which the NPC submitted a response.

Since then, the Commission has continued to ‘hold Government to account’ on national preparedness, engaging constructively with the authors of key Government policies and frameworks, and commenting on revisions of key documents such as the National Risk Register and the Integrated Review (both revised in 2022).  NPC evidence and recommendations are valued by stakeholders in Government and beyond.  Many of the themes highlighted by the NPC in its first two years were picked up, for example, in the UK Government Resilience Framework, published in December 2022 and we continue to contribute as that Framework is developed.  Policymakers and decision makers in other sectors actively seek our input into preparedness challenges – often looking to us to broker cross-sector conversations.

Our focus in the medium term is to ensure that the right focus and resources are applied to national preparedness – whether that be in Government, private sector or in the community. That will require continued effort, open conversations and a continuation of the pragmatic approach for which we have so quickly become recognised.

Subscribe to our newsletter for periodic updates