Wednesday, February 02, 2022

Updating the policy on mandatory jabs for health and social care workers.

The Health secretary has announced that, subject to consultation, vaccinations will no longer be a condition of deployment for health and social care workers - ensuring that the response to Covid-19 remains proportionate and balanced as we build our wall of defence against the virus.

  • When regulations making vaccines a condition of deployment were announced, Delta was the dominant variant of Covid-19. Now it has been replaced by Omicron, which is less severe, it is right that to re-examine the balance of risks and opportunities of this policy.
  • That is why Sajid Javid has announced that – subject to consultation and parliamentary approval – vaccinations as a condition of deployment will no longer be required for health and social care workers.
  • I thought that the policy of making vaccination a condition of employment in NHS and social care positions caring for the most vulnerable was the right thing to do on the based on the information available at the time it was put forward (so did the opposition) but in the words often attributed to John Maynard Keynes "When the facts change, I change my mind."
  • Although it is proposed that the legal requirement to be vaccinated should be revoked, government and NHS leaders still argue that all those working in health and social care still have a professional duty to get vaccinated. Everyone who has not yet received their jabs and does not have a specific medical reason not to do is is still strongly encouraged to come forward and get the jab.

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