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16th June 2021

Breaking: COVID-19 Jab for Care Home Staff Reportedly to be Mandatory

Out of bed and onto breaking news

I have woken up and blearily looked at my phone to the Headline from all major news outlets that COVID-19 jabs will be mandatory for all care home staff.

My first thought…how did I miss this in the DHSC circular? I didn’t, it isn’t there.

You missed this too

So if I have woken up to how have I missed this? You will be too, and now it is how to handle it, because until it comes from the horse’s mouth uncertainty will grow.

So what are news sources saying? PLEASE NOTE this is under plans which have not been officially communicated by the DHSC  

First reported in the Guardian the key messages are;

  • It will be mandatory for care home staff to receive the COVID-19 vaccination
  • This must be done within 16 weeks of an official announcement or risk losing their job
  • A further consultation will get underway to extend mandatory jabs to NHS workers

What is not clear?

What is not clear is whether other social care workers will also be required to have the jab.

So what can you do? 

My mum always said mushrooms grow quickly in the dark… so put some light on it.

Be clear about what you know 

The first thing is to let staff know that you have seen the news reports. Set out clearly what has been said and where, but impress that you have received no information directly from the DHSC and will do nothing until you have been told officially.

The news will get frantic 

As I sit here writing, I have refreshed my browser and see updates from different news channels. Explain the pace of information will increase around this news story, but it is not in place until you have heard it from the DHSC.

Various social media pages will be generating a stir – remind people about reputable news sources.

Keep an open door 

Let staff know you are there for them, and they should speak to you about any concerns they have.

Offer to speak with any staff who have not had the vaccination and are worried.

Create informal-feel team meetings to talk 

  • Ensure team leaders facilitate
  • Keep a minute for staff
  • Run enough staff meetings to include those working unsociable hours
  • Remember this will need to be done in line with COVID-19 restrictions

Seek legal advice 

You may want to speak to your legal representative about the impact and choices you have when this situation becomes official.

Lastly – Be kind

Keep trying to gently persuade rather than force.

My last blog ‘Vaccination - The Human Side’ shows ways to understand people’s fears and preferences.

Emily MacDonagh (Emily Andre) is on the DHSC YouTube Channel speaking with a social care worker about the vaccine. Use resources like this to educate.

QCS and the team are always here to support and keep you updated through this difficult time.

 

*All information is correct at the time of publishing. Use of this material is subject to your acceptance of our terms and conditions.

Abi Spence

Registration and Inspection Specialist

Abi has worked for and with Government agencies relevant to social care for the past 12+ years. Primarily with the Department of Health, Social Services Inspectorate, Commission for Social Care Inspection (CSCI) and since its inception the Care Quality Commission (CQC). As part of this long involvement Abi has developed a wide and detailed understanding of relevant issues and has worked closely with stakeholders such as people that use services, carers, providers, local government, the Department of Health, Ofsted and the Audit Commission. Read more

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