By Nadeya Hussain
The government has amended the Coronavirus regulations for social care staff following health secretary Sajid Javid’s announcement in the House of Commons that all NHS staff will have to be fully vaccinated to continue their jobs.
All staff must be vaccinated by April 2022. He also reiterated that “no-one in the NHS or care that is currently unvaccinated should be scapegoated, singled out or shamed” as this is a measure to protect vulnerable people, colleagues, and themselves.
More than 100,000 members of the NHS are unvaccinated, according to statistics. People may refuse vaccines for many different reasons, including personal choice.
Unfortunately, now they have no other choice, which has caused many debates.
As the conversation about personal rights has occurred, it has generated a few disagreements in opinion. According to Article 10 of The Human Rights Act, everyone has the right to freedom of expression to express their choice and opinion.
Unfortunately, although you can have an opinion, in this situation there isn’t a choice as it is a mandatory option.
We spoke to a staff nurse at the Leeds General Infirmary hospital to get an opinion on this new change: “Being told off by people about the vaccine does get a bit frustrating, especially when they have no idea what it’s like working in the NHS.
“Everyone had the privilege of keeping 2 metres away from each other while the NHS staff did not. We put our lives at risk and still do for the benefit of the masses.
“I’ve been working in the Covid ward since the 2nd lockdown and haven’t yet taken the vaccines due to medical reasons. Some people choose not to take the vaccine, and the government should respect that. Right now, some trusts have made the covid vaccine mandatory which in my opinion is immoral.”
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However, patients who do not work in the medical field claim that this should not be a controversial idea since you are protecting your patients from any harm and simply doing your job as an NHS staff member.
Frances Ryan, in an opinion piece for The Guardian, also stated, “It is remarkable that requiring NHS staff who have face-to-face contact with patients to be vaccinated is even controversial. “
An anonymous user under this post further commented their opinion regarding the vaccination as they stated, “A medical practitioner’s primary concern is the duty of care they give to their patients. This overrides any moral concerns or strongly held beliefs.”
How do you feel about this decision as a member of the public or a member of the NHS staff? Are you in favour of the decision or in opposition to it? Let us know what you think by leaving a comment below.