Compulsory vaccination against COVID-19 for care home workers is unnecessary, disproportionate and wrong: experts

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In The BMJ today, experts argue that compulsory vaccination is “unnecessary, disproportionate and wrong.”

The government’s decision to remove the right to care for household staff in England to choose whether or not to be vaccinated against covid-19 is a profound deviation from public health standards. The next planned step is a rapid and massive expansion of compulsory vaccination to legally require vaccination against covid-19 and influenza against all front-line health and social services. , subject to consultation.

But Lydia Hayes, a law professor at the University of Kent and Allyson Pollock, a professor of public health at the University of Newcastle, say vaccination “is not a panacea for safety” and “will not address the serious shortcomings of the healthcare sector in England “.

They point out that government consultation documents and subsequent media reports have stated this it is necessary due to the low vaccination rate in some .

But the figures show that by June 20, 2021, more than 90% of in England he had received two doses of a covid-19 , 84% of healthcare workers in England had received a first dose and 72% of healthcare workers had received a second dose, in line with the recommendations of the Scientific Advisory Group.

A closer look at the data shows that the adoption of the first dose of covid-19 vaccination among care workers is less than 80% (68-74%) in only three English local authorities, but these figures are an artifact of a very low number of staff employed in care homes in these areas of London.

In addition, they point out that the government’s own methodological note warns that reliable information on vaccine uptake cannot be derived directly from data used by the government.

According to regulatory legislation, safety in care homes “is achieved through an adequate level of personnel, training, equipment, cleaning, , risk assessment and consultation with staff and residents, ”they write.

Vaccination protects individuals from covid-19 and reduces the risk of disease transmission to others, but neither the duration of protection nor its effectiveness against new variants is known.

Wales and Scotland have rejected compulsory vaccination for healthcare workers and have invested in mandatory registration systems for healthcare workers designed to professionalise the sector, increase access to training and incorporate a culture of continuous professional development, they add.

But in England, successive ministers have rejected national attention register. “Therefore, the Department of Health and Social Care and the CQC do not know who the healthcare workers in England are and the training of the healthcare workforce is tremendously inadequate.”

“Civil liberty is a necessary component to strong public health. Mandatory vaccination is unnecessary, disproportionate and wrong, they warn.” Safety can only be guaranteed by taking steps to build trust and mitigate outbreaks. “

“Healthcare workers need paid time to access vaccination and good training, decent wages (including sick pay), personal protective equipment and strong infection control measures,” they conclude.


Should COVID vaccines be mandatory for care home staff? Expert debate


More information:
Editorial: Compulsory vaccination against covid-19 for care workers, The BMJ, DOI: 10.1136 / bmj.n1684

Citation: Mandatory vaccination against COVID-19 for domestic workers is not necessary, disproportionate and wrong: experts (2021, July 7) recovered on July 7, 2021 at https://medicalxpress.com/news / 2021-07-mandatory-covid-vaccination-home -workers.html

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