Health department warned over compulsory COVID-19 vaccine for NHS staff in England

Posted on 27 January 2022

​Last month saw a legislation voted by MPs to make it mandatory for NHS staff in England to

be double vaccinated from 1 st April.

Ministers have since been issued with a warning over the compulsory vaccination, with a

leaked document, drawn up by the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC), showing

the extensive omicron variant statistics which casts doubts over the new law’s rationality.

The document shows the effectiveness of the two vaccines against the Omicron variant, the

subsequent drop in hospitalisation is justified with the milder COVID variant.

With April 1 st approaching, 4.9% of NHS staff could remain unvaccinated (70,000 staff

members.) NHS trusts are preparing to send dismissal letters from the 3 rd of February to all

staff members who are yet to receive their first COVID-19 vaccine.

With the current pressure on the healthcare industry, last week saw a multitude of groups

including the Royal College of Nursing urging Sajid Javid, the UK’s health secretary to delay

implementing the legislation. It is known as “vaccination as a condition of deployment”

(VCOD2). An earlier VCOD1 rule applied to care workers and came into force on 11


On Tuesday the Royal College of Nursing said the leaked document should prompt ministers

to call a halt to the imposition of compulsory jabs, which it called “reckless.” “The

government should now instigate a major rethink”, said Patricia Marquis, the RCN’s England

director. “Mandation is not the answer and sacking valued nursing staff during a workforce

crisis is reckless.”

“Ministers would be wise to rethink the policy and avoid putting even more pressure on our

NHS by sacking tens of thousands of health and social care workers in the next few weeks.

When you know something won’t work, it’s right to change course.”

Hospital boards have raised severe concerns that they may have to close entire units and

send patients elsewhere for treatment because the enforced dismissal of unvaccinated staff

means they cannot run safely. There is particular concern about maternity units as hospitals

are already 2,500 midwives short.

Referencing to The Guardian

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