Mental health staff included as ‘frontline’ workers and be first in line for covid-19 vaccine
Posted on: January 21, 2021
There has been confirmation that mental health staff are included as ‘frontline’ workers and will be in the first category of those receiving the covid-19 vaccine. The guidance from JCVI (Joint Committee of Vaccination and Immunisation’s) explicitly highlights:
“Staff who have frequent face-to-face contact with patients and who are directly involved in patient care in either secondary or primary care, mental health, urgent or emergency care and community settings [should have priority access to the vaccine].
It is expected that Trusts will complete covid-19 vaccination of all frontline health and social care workers as quickly as possible. Trusts will focus on achieving maximum uptake, with the expectations to have made significant progress by the first week of February and to provide vaccinations 7 days a week.
By mid-January NHS Trusts (including acute, mental health, community and ambulance trusts) will be established as “hospital hubs” with a responsibility for COVID-19 vaccine delivery to all individuals within JCVI cohort 2b as set out in the updated Public Health England Green Book 2. JCVI recommend that within this group, you should give priority to frontline staff “at high risk of acquiring infection, at high individual risk of developing serious disease, or at risk of transmitting infection to multiple vulnerable persons or other staff in a healthcare environment”.
This includes but is not limited to:
• staff working on the vaccination programme
• staff who have frequent face-to-face contact with patients and who are directly involved in patient care in either secondary or primary care, mental health, urgent and emergency care and community settings
• those working in independent, voluntary and non-standard healthcare settings such as hospices, and community-based mental health or addiction services
• laboratory, pathology and mortuary staff
• those working for a sub-contracted provider of facilities services such as portering or cleaning
• temporary, locum or ‘bank’ staff, including those working in the COVID-19 vaccination programme, students, trainees and volunteers who are working with patients
• frontline social care workers directly working with vulnerable people who need care and support irrespective of where they work (for example in hospital, people’s own homes, day centres, or supported housing); or who they are employed by (for example local government, NHS, independent sector or third sector).
Look out for information from your local authority on when and where you can get your vaccine.