Intended for healthcare professionals

Optical Illusion

In April 2020, during the frst wave of COVID-19-19, Matt Hancock, UK Secretary of State for Health at the time, announced that the government would be performing 100,000 tests a day by the end of the month. When he said that the target had been achieved, there was widespread disbelief and it transpired that 40,000 had been home-testing kits which had been posted out but not actually returned. The government’s claims were challenged by the UK Statistics Authority, which suggested that Mr Hancock needed to be more careful with his use of numbers in future. One commentator described them as ‘Potemkin village tests’. For the beneft of anyone who is not familiar with the term ‘Potemkin village’, let me explain.

Dermatology in practice 2021; 27(4): 110–110
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