It is important that health and social care workers get vaccinated with both the COVID-19 and flu vaccines to protect themselves and their service users. Flu and COVID-19 can be life-threatening and getting both viruses increases risk of serious illness.
In line with good practice, Public Health is asking care setting managers to keep a track of vaccination uptake rates among staff and residents for each social care setting to help manage risks at a local and regional level. This is so that in the event of an outbreak, the outbreak cell can quickly assess the potential risks for residents, service users and staff, and make informed decisions about the protection of vulnerable residents and staffing capacity.
Understanding the vaccination uptake in a social care setting is a key part of the outbreak cell’s risk assessment. This enables the cell to understand if there are increased vulnerabilities to service users and helps with the understanding of the uptake rates across our region.
Staff who are unvaccinated are more likely to catch and spread COVID-19, especially if they are asymptomatic. Unvaccinated staff are more likely to experience severe illness from COVID-19 and as such would be off work for longer again increasing the risks to the setting during an outbreak.
It is mandatory for all CQC-registered care settings to update the Department of Health and Social Care’s Capacity Tracker each month with the latest information on staff vaccination rates. From time to time, Hertfordshire’s Adult Care Services will also request vaccination figures for staff and residents to better understand vaccine uptake on a regional and local level. Please keep a track on the vaccination uptake in each care setting and provide it on request to help support decision making locally.