Mandatory vaccination risks worsening NHS staff shortage

Responding to the launch today (Thursday) of a six-week consultation into making ​Covid vaccination compulsory for frontline health workers in England, UNISON head of health Sara Gorton said:

“The key to convincing hesitant staff is persuasion​, not force. Pushing NHS staff to get vaccinated ​will create resentment, destroy ​already fragile morale and ​reduce take-up. ​Of course, everyone who can should be jabbed, but as with care, compulsion is not the way.

“​Mandatory vaccinations in care have heralded an exodus of staff. The ​government is in danger ​of making the same mistake twice. With waiting lists growing, the NHS can ill-afford to lose any more staff.

“​Vaccination levels are ​extremely high among health workers. ​It makes no sense to risk worsening staff shortages with the pandemic far from over and a treatment backlog that’ll take years to shift.”

Notes to editors:
– UNISON is the UK’s largest union, with more than 1.3 million members providing public services in education, local government, the NHS, police service and energy. They are employed in the public, voluntary and private sectors.

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