Calderdale councillor calling for front line health staff to be vaccinated

Front line health staff should be vaccinated against COVID-19 to carry out their jobs, says a senior councillor.

Wednesday, 10th February 2021, 11:35 am

Coun Steven Leigh, who leads the Conservative group on Calderdale Council, was speaking in a debate on vaccination rollout.

He told members of the council’s Adults, Health and Social Care Scrutiny Board that he was concerned about the issue of some front line health professionals opting not to have the vaccination themselves.

The rollout of vaccination in Calderdale continued to be tremendous, but he had a simple question, although he was sure the answer might not be so simple, he said.

Vaccines being given out to people in Calderdale

“Of course, it is an individual’s choice whether they do or not.

“But should patients have a reasonable expectation that front line staff, for example the person giving them the inoculation, have themselves been inoculated.

“Should a condition of being a front line practitioner be that a person has been inoculated in the interest of the patient and the public?” said Coun Leigh.

Public Health senior programme manager Kate Horne, speaking generally about vaccination, said it was a choice and vaccination could not be forced upon someone.

Coun Leigh (Ryburn) insisted: “I do think, and many people think, a condition of being a front line person in the NHS should demand that they have inoculations.”

Board Chair Coun Howard Blagbrough (Con, Brighouse) said he thought it was a valid question.

Eleanor Nossiter, health engagement practitioner, said the amount of staff uptake was very, very good.

Ms Hoorne said whilst uptake was really good, public health was trying to engage with any who had refused and their reasons to try and address the issue.