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Minister rules out civil service ‘interference’ in OMT Covid reports


Recommendations from the government’s Outbreak Management Team on dealing with coronavirus will be made public before they are sent to the health ministry from now on, health minister Ernst Kuipers has told MPs.

Kuipers made the announcement during a debate on claims that civil servants made changes or influenced the OMT’s advice, which was crucial in determining the government’s approach to dealing with the pandemic.

During the debate, Kuipers said that civil servants had only asked questions and suggested changes to the text for for clarification purposes, but admitted this could give the impression that they were attempting to influence the OMT.

In particular, opposition MPs were concerned about reports that civil servants had watered down recommendations about the use of face masks in residential care.

Nieuwsuur reported extensively on the text changes in February this year.

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