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Should the Covid vaccine be mandatory for care home workers?

Care home workers in England could be legally required to be vaccinated against Covid-19 under plans being considered by the Government.

Care groups and unions have said they do not think vaccinations should become mandatory for care home staff after the Government confirmed it is looking into the option.

Care home workers in England could be legally required to be vaccinated against Covid-19 under plans being considered by the Government, according to the Health Secretary.

Matt Hancock said that “no final decision” has been taken amid a review into vaccination passports, which is considering a range of issues.

The National Care Forum, Independent Care Group, Four Seasons Health Care, Unison and the GMB union all expressed concern over compulsory vaccination.

The Telegraph reported leaked details of a paper submitted to the “Covid O” sub-committee of Cabinet which said that Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Mr Hancock had agreed to the proposal.

Mr Hancock told LBC that “many” care homes had asked for this to happen, adding: “There’s a legal change that’s required and, as you can see, I’m open to that, but no final decision has been taken.”

The plans have emerged amid concerns of low uptake of staff in care homes looking after those who are among the most vulnerable to the virus.

But it would prove controversial, with the Prime Minister’s official spokesman previously accepting it would be “discriminatory” to force people to be vaccinated.

Mr Hancock said that there was “still further to go” in vaccine uptake in care staff, with around 76% of workers in elderly care homes vaccinated, and more than 90% of residents.

The Independent Care Group, which represents providers in York and North Yorkshire, said making the vaccine mandatory for care workers could put people off from joining the sector.

Chairman Mike Padgham said it is vital care workers get vaccinated but it should be voluntary, adding: “I think rather than force it through legislation, the Government has more work to do in terms of persuading everyone, not just care workers, about how important it is that the whole country has the vaccine so that we are all protected.

“There are already 120,000 vacancies in the care sector, we don’t need to put anything else in the way that might prevent people from joining our rewarding profession.”

The GMB union said care workers should not be “strong-armed or bullied with threats of the law”.

What are your views? Would the vaccination of staff be a consideration for you if choosing a care home for a loved one? Do you think care home workers have a duty of care to protect their residents? Or do you think this proposed legislation is wrong?

Should the Covid vaccine be mandatory for Care Home workers?

291 people have already voted, what's your opinion? Yes No

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viv0147
2nd Apr 2021
0
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Care home workers should have a vaccination, if not then they don't care! So, therefore, they should not be employed
Not2grey
1st Apr 2021
0
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I am not one for coercing people into getting jabs , I prefer the carrot to the stick . It should be up to the Home owners to decide . I thibk that id we have a vaccine passport and people start being refused entry to things because they are not vaccnated they will probably want to have them .
The media has not helped in this matter with reports of Blood Clots etc. We need to educate not punish .
ChrisP53
1st Apr 2021
0
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it should also be compulsory for all home care workers and other home visitors and all emergency services personnel and armed forces personnel who are assisting with vaccinations
EleanorP
1st Apr 2021
1
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We have already had many of our freedoms taken away. Free speech is rarely allowed. Making something mandatory will discriminate against minority sectors of society. There is growing evidence that the vaccine will not stop the spread of the virus but will cause new mutations to develop. Many social media sites are cancelling free speech and prohibiting people their view and opinions. The u.k once stood for freedom of speech and choice but sadly is no longer the Great Britain it once was. There are deeper issues involved in making the vaccine mandatory.
jeanmark
6 days ago
0
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EleanorP, interesting viewpoint, but how does making the vacation mandatory discriminate against minority sections of society? Also, can making it mandatory be compared to loss of free speech? A mandatory vaccination programme has, as its purpose, a means to protect the community as a whole.

Few vaccines are 100% effective against a specific infection, but it does help in reducing its severity and helps develop a degree of herd immunity to protect those unable to have the vaccine. Viruses by their very nature mutate as they replicate themselves, that's how they survive. The flu is a classic example of why the annual flu vaccine is targeted at the most aggressive strain, it cannot possible protect against every strain as they mutate.
GrahameC7
1st Apr 2021
0
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If the people who care or the vulnerable don't have the vaccine then it could get out of control and cost more lives !
viking
30th Mar 2021
0
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How would you react if YOU were laying in a bed in a care home and in casual conversation with your flight attendant, found that he/she had not been vacinated and that the rest of the staff in the tea room were refuseniks. Perhaps it would then be time to settle the bill and move some where safer.
ecarg
29th Mar 2021
1
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Mixwd feelings on this one .I can understand why having the vaccine as a care worker could be mandatory and that care staff would want to protect their clients. As an individual I wouldn't want it to be mandatory as they may have valid reasons why they do not want to be vaccinated.This seems discriminatory and should it be extended to other sectors i.e. police dentists etc.
jeanmark
29th Mar 2021
0
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Ecarg, I agree it should be extended to all who care for vulnerable people be it in a Care Home, Hospital or the community. It may appear to be discriminately, which some have already said, but does not complying with a community approach to vaccination programmes discriminate against those who are unable to have the vaccine because of underlying conditions? Should their health be compromised as a result of someone who objects to vaccines? I accept it is a dilemma, but many of us will remember what it was like for infectious disease before such vaccines were developed and community programmes introduced.
ecarg
30th Mar 2021
1
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I'm convinced ,but would be interested to know what percentage of unvaccinated staff in a team would impose what percentage risk .
jeanmark
30th Mar 2021
0
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Ecarg, I was commenting on the community as a whole not a specific part of it. I think it may be difficult to assess what percentage would be safe in a care home. In general a large section of the community needs to be vaccinated for herd immunity to work and thus protect those at risk. For example 19 out of every 20 people need to be vaccinated against measles to protect people who are not vaccinated (https://vk.ovg.ox.ac.uk/vk/herd-immunity).
mag379
28th Mar 2021
3
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Have any of you read what the scientists say! The vaccine doesn't stop you getting Covid and doesn't stop you passing it on, so if everyone in the country is jabbed it still won't stop it.
Wilf
28th Mar 2021
0
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If you have 2 jabs of Astra Zenica you are 90% protected against catching the virus so it's a pretty good bet you will not get it, especially if you take precautions like wearing a mask in public. One of the reasons we are down to a few thousand people catching it daily is 27 million people have had the jab. Unlike Germany where a much smaller percentage have had the jab and they had 100,000 new cases on Friday alone!
jeanmark
28th Mar 2021
0
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Mag379, there is no vaccine that is 100% effective, but we still need them to reduce the risk of serious illness and of spread.

The scientist are still uncertain as to its effectiveness in preventing transmission, but have not said categorically it does not prevent transmission. This will be better able to be assessed once those who are able to be vaccinated have received both doses.

Yes, I have read what the scientist say, in particular the research studies from the scientist developing the vaccines and I am convinced of the need for us all to be vaccinated to help reduce the effect of the disease as a whole.
PeeJay77
28th Mar 2021
0
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It should be mandatory for all people in the country the pandemic is terrible all over the world . Lets control it here.
binks
27th Mar 2021
2
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The reason l voted `YES` is because we can not be in a position again whereby close family are not allowed to visit but there are care workers who refuse to have the vaccine!
Wilf
27th Mar 2021
2
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1
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The more vaccinated, the safer our world becomes!
viking
26th Mar 2021
0
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There will always be a percentage of the population who wish to be regarded as " different " and not follow the mainstream. This trait is well known in the UK making it a nation of individualists.

This together with those who suffer tryanophobia [ estimated 20% of the population ] makes trying to make this an enforceable issue very, very, difficult.
jeanmark
26th Mar 2021
1
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Viking, as you know anti-vaxers are a well known group of people who are not necessarily afraid of tyrants but of 'poisons' being put into their bodies, they came to the fore when the MMR fiasco started. They are not confined to the UK, so I'm sorry, we are not a nation of individualist!
MaryB38
26th Mar 2021
1
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Unless exempted on health grounds they should consider the people they care for above anything
Surfer Pete
25th Mar 2021
4
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This is a no brainer! Of course all care home staff should be vaccinated as well as all agency staff that provide back up to the full timers.

Having seen the carnage of Covid first hand in my Dad's care home I would not be happy if unvaccinated staff were in contact with him.
Nannypink
25th Mar 2021
3
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I am surprised to hear that there is even a need to make it compulsory, I dare say it is only the minority but nonetheless, if I had a relative in a carehome I would expect the management to ensure their premises were Covid secure
Juschi2008
25th Mar 2021
3
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I think carehome workers need to be vaccinated. I used to work in the NHS and HepB vaccination was, and still is compulsory. This is important for the protection of patients/clients as well as the individual staff.
MaureenM525
25th Mar 2021
4
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Definitely should have it. It you work in any clinical environment it is mandatory to have all your vaccinations up to date including the hepatitis b jab. You cant start in the job until this is proved. I worked in the NHS for 40 years during which time many things changed including the hep b jab. Cant see why this should be a problem unless for medical reasons.!!
jeanmark
25th Mar 2021
0
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Actually MaureenM525, only certain vaccinations were compulsory in the NHS and at the moment there are health care staff, working in both hospitals and the community, who have chosen not to be vaccinated against Covid.
Kes
25th Mar 2021
5
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I totally agree with Marley444. I’ve read that the take up of the vaccine for care staff is really quite low. I don’t understand why those working in care homes and in the wider care sector wouldn’t want to have the jabs. Surely it’s all about lessening the risks among those most vulnerable. Thankfully, I don’t have any family in any care home setting. However, it would distress me greatly if I had, and knowing that they were being put at further risk by carers who don’t take the risk seriously enough. All people who work in the care sector, and the NHS should definitely be required to have the vaccination, so my answer is Yes.
Munsterlander
25th Mar 2021
6
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Unless there is a good medical reason everyone should have the jab. We need to get rid of the virus and out of perpetual lockdowns.
MrsPat
25th Mar 2021
6
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Yes I think so. After all about 27 million of us have had it why wouldn't care workers want to have it also?
Mabel06
25th Mar 2021
9
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I agree with Marley444. Why, if you choose to work in a caring profession would you not care enough about your residents to keep them as safe as you can? So yes, I believe having the vaccine should be compulsory in a setting where there are vulnerable people.
Marley444
25th Mar 2021
8
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I am currently looking for a care home for my MIL and even though she has been vaccinated with both doses, my preference would be that all care workers are vaccinated. Likewise, I have seen the man from Pimlico Plumbers saying he will only employ workers who have been vaccinated and I think he is thinking about the safety of the customers in the same way. We all have a duty to protect ourselves and those people that we come into contact with - we want to move on and get our lives back to how they were and if vaccination is the only way out, then it's a no brainer!

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