Health 15:03 16/06/2021 World

Covid vaccinations to be compulsory for England care home staff

Covid vaccinations are to become compulsory for staff in care homes for older people in England, the BBC has been told.

Care staff are expected to be given 16 weeks to have the jab - or face being redeployed away from frontline care or losing their jobs.

The move, first reported in the Guardian, is expected to be announced by the government in the next few days.

Consultations will begin on a similar rule for other health and care staff.

Care organisations have warned that compulsory vaccinations could cause significant difficulties in a sector that already struggles to recruit enough people.

The government, however, is believed to have considerable concerns about low take-up of the vaccine in some areas, including London.

A Whitehall source told the BBC: "These moves would save lives and there is precedent with the Hepatitis B vaccine guidance for doctors."

Workers who can prove they are medically exempt from getting the vaccine will not be affected.

The move follows a consultation by the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC), launched in April, two months after the government said it had met its target of offering all frontline care workers a first dose of a vaccine by mid-February.

At the time, it said 47% of English care homes for older people had more than a fifth of staff yet to take up the vaccine, despite staff at all eligible care homes having been offered vaccines, with the vast majority of homes having had repeat visits by vaccine teams.



Source Panorama.am
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