Should COVID vaccines be compulsory f... - British Lung Foun...

British Lung Foundation

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Should COVID vaccines be compulsory for care home staff? Experts debate.

2greys profile image

The UK government has announced that COVID-19 vaccination will become mandatory for staff working in care homes for older people in England. Staff will be given 16 weeks to get the vaccine. If they don’t get the jab, they will be redeployed from frontline care or lose their job.

Mandating vaccination would increase vaccine uptake in care home workers, but it would be a significant intrusion into individual freedom. Is it ethically justifiable?

50 Replies

Sharon has already had her jabs, both AstraZeneca , plus prior infection. Her employer has already emailed forms for staff to fill in.

Gladwyn profile image
Gladwyn in reply to 2greys

Well done Sharon.

ALL frontline nurses , Carers, doctors , ambulance and others involved in care of the nations citizens should be vaccinated as a matter of course. NO QUESTIONS ABOUT IT.

Damon1864 profile image

I agree they should all be vacinated, people in hospital and care homes are there to be cared for in safety so yes I agree with it. Have a good day and take care 😊 Bernadette and Jack 🐕 xxxxxx

I do believe that being vaccinated is a personal choice, However, if you work in care home etc you have a duty of care to these vulnerable people and in this case I believe you should be vaccinated.

I agree, they should all be vaccinated it's far to risky when working with sick and elderly patients. But I believe there are some who might not want to be vaccinated, don't know if there still be able to work.

Why would they not want to be vaccinated unless a medical reason . A lot of them must have seen how devastating the illness can be 🤔🤔🤔

My dad has pointed out to me that worldwide smallpox has been eradicated. It was made compulsory in UK to have the inoculation and I believe strongly that key workers must have jabs unless medical reasons for them not to.Also many professions including doctors have to have certain inoculations to practice eg Hepatitis jab. So really this is nothing new!!

I agree with this but it seems rather unfair that applying the same to NHS workers has gone to consultation while care home owners and managers have not been offered the same courtesy.

Bevvy profile image
Bevvy in reply to CDPO16

I agree but feel consultation shouldn’t be happening. Need to action NOW not faffing around asking different opinions and debating them!!

Littlepom profile image
Littlepom in reply to Bevvy

I agree Bevvy, consultation is expensive and a way of delaying an obvious decision. I do not want anyone treating or caring for me who has not been vaccinated.

Davegt profile image
Davegt in reply to Bevvy

Well said.👍

Lemon7 profile image
Lemon7 in reply to CDPO16

Think all health staff should be vaccinated, also as duty of care to patients and colleagues who've endured enough stress and risk from the pandemic already.

Davegt profile image
Davegt in reply to CDPO16

No consultation is needed. You either have both jabs or will no longer be able to do front line work with elderly or vulnerable patients. You owe it to the patients/residents and their families. This is a matter of urgency and we do not have time to consult when the end result should be the same. Who would be happy to have a friend or relative cared for by people who prefer not to be vaccinated.

I am uneasy about enforced vaccination as this could set a precedent and undermine our freedom as a nation. However I do think on occasion this is necessary and in this case it certainly is.

Lemon7 profile image
Lemon7 in reply to hypercat54

Agree in these circumstances too

I think a fair way would be to make it a condition of employment that all NEW care home be vaccinated. That would not impinge on anyone’s rights. There is such a huge staff turnover in care homes that it would not take long before everyone was vaccinated.

All nurses and medics have to be up to date with most major vaccinations and efficacy tested/ boosters given to be able to practice in England. So I don’t see why Covid should be any different.

This is not happening in Wales. There's a different approach by the Welsh government.

I think if all those workers who dont want to take the vaccine were offered an incentive say £50, i bet that they will be queuing for miles. Those who really care about the oeople they are looking after would already be vaccinated!I think they are offering incentives like beer and money in USA. I dont think its right to do that but may be the best thing to get everyone done.

This is going to be an unmitigated disaster. It is already very challenging to recruit and retain good quality social care staff. Those who do not wish to be vaccinated will simply leave and quite frankly, we shall be up in the creek without a paddle.

2greys profile image
2greys in reply to crashdoll

Sadly some homes crash and burn due to extremely bad management, eventually only being staffed entirely by agency staff because of their bad reputation as an employer. I know of one, where my partner used to work, where their bad reputation now affects their ability to get any agency staff at all. Even the full-time nurses have gone. My sympathy lies with the residents who are no longer getting the quality care that they or their families pay a heavy price for.

crashdoll profile image
crashdoll in reply to 2greys

2greys - oh yes, my primary concern lies with the care and wellbeing of residents. If care staff leave in significant numbers due to not wanting a vaccine, residents will be at massive risk. There just aren’t enough people to replace them. Obviously unvaccinated staff should be ensuring the strictest level of infection control and full PPE.

Interesting that they’ve started with a predominantly non unionised group, not the NHS, for example. In my role as a social worker, I go into care homes and can spend many hours there. Yet, there’s no insistence on my profession to be vaccinated. We are very high risk - going into multiple settings. FWIW, I’m vaccinated and the uptake in my organisation has been higher than average but I think we need to understand why some groups of people are declining the vaccine instead of suggesting they don’t care.

Bevvy profile image
Bevvy in reply to crashdoll

I 100% agree about other professions needing to be vaccinated. That’s why earliest I said all Key workers should be vaccinated not just those who work in residential homes.As you say you go into lots of different settings. As did I when I was working. Very easy to spread Covid around!

Davegt profile image
Davegt in reply to crashdoll

Sorry, I understand your viewpoint, but I do not believe this is something that we leave to personal preferences. We do not need to understand the reasons why certain groups choose not to be vaccinated for care home employment purposes. In the wider sense yes we need to understand why; especially when certain groups are more likely to develop serious complications that could result in death. However for care home employment 2 jabs should be mandatory, and included in the contract of employment.

crashdoll profile image
crashdoll in reply to Davegt

Moving forward, I imagine it will be in a contract of employment. However, I am unclear of the legality of amending existing contracts. I’m sure the new legislation will clarify.

I would very much like all care workers to be vaccinated and I am 100% pro vaccine. However, if we don’t take time to understand the deep rooted cultural reasons behind why certain groups of people decline the vaccine, how on earth can we expect to educate, support and encourage? Telling already marginalised ethnic minorities that they clearly “don’t care” will get backs up. Providing education and guidance is key. It’s actually been very successful in many BAME groups and religious and cultural leaders have worked together to increase numbers.

I can assure you that losing care workers will be catastrophic. I see the impact of understaffed care homes and domiciliary care agencies. Let’s educate and encourage vaccine reticent care workers, not take their jobs away.

Davegt profile image
Davegt in reply to crashdoll

Well up the creek it is then. If a member of staff is not prepared to have the vaccine when caring for the most vulnerable in society they should leave. The priority is the residents they care for, not themselves. As a carer you should be prepared to do whatever it takes to care for and protect residents.

Ethically the government will be lucky to be able to do this to staff as the vaccines are not oficially authorised yet, so they are trying scare tactics. Of course healthcare workers get mandatory vaccines already, myself being one. But as the covid ones are not marketed yet and only for emergency ( in the leaflet you got with your vaccine), this takes all owness off the companies and government, and also means it will be a very difficult legal battle to make staff take it when its not oficially marketed. It will in future i daresay become necessary, like Hep B etc, but will not be able to be enforced until it is classed as a marketed drug and finished the phase 3 trials with results peer reviewed etc.

Kate0307 profile image
Kate0307 in reply to Younie

I agree Younie. Would also think that all the residents have been vaccinated and likely to be at the same risk from staff in which the vaccine doesn’t work

Davegt profile image
Davegt in reply to Younie

Well the vast majority of adults in England have now been vaccinated and there have been very few incidents of severe adverse reactions or death. If you wish to be in a care home environment then vaccination is essential to protect and care for residents. If the vaccine was not considered safe none of us would have been able to have it. It will be rubber stamped as marketable. You don't vaccinate the majority of adults in England then say "oh we have decided this vaccine should not be authorised."

Younie profile image
Younie in reply to Davegt

Thats irrelevant, will still be a legal battle for government to enforce as its not oficially authorised is my point, until its oficially authorised they will struggle to do it

Davegt profile image
Davegt in reply to Younie

Well we will have to disagree on that. The MHRA agreed to temporary authorisation, making it legal, last October. That order is valid for 12 months. It is therefore legal to administer vaccines for 12 months. At the end of 12 months either the Government will approve a further 12 month temporary authorisation, subject to MHRA, or MHRA will give full approval. I understand, even with full approval, it must be renewed every 5 years. So in any event it is never in aeternum.

...Of course , - all the staff at Hospitals are tested regularly - that is a fact , - Ive been in hospital a few times since all this started to know that ... so why not in care homes ? - I'me pretty sure if anyone one here had lost a member of their family to covid in a Care home , only to find out later , a member of staff had the disease , - would have something to say about it ..-

2greys profile image
2greys in reply to vittorio

They are also regularly tested in nursing homes, or at least the ones my partner has worked at, I cannot comment about residential care homes though.

Marlsboy profile image
Marlsboy in reply to vittorio

But testing will only show positive once you have the disease, and by then you could have passed it on already.

I worked with children and families for many years. Before I started my training as a nursery nurse (back in 1966!) it was a compulsory requirement that I was vaccinated against TB and I had to have a chest x-ray before taking up subsequent posts to ensure that I was not passing anything on unknowingly.

I didn't occur to any of us to refuse this. It was seen as essential. If you didn't accept it, you didn't do the job. No arguments then about freedom to choose.

Some of us are prevented from doing certain jobs for a variety of reasons. I am maths dyslexic (self diagnosed) and would no more dream of applying to become an accountant than fly to the moon. Similarly, I have never possessed the necessary stamina or physique to manage hard physical work (although child care can be challenging and physical to a degree, it's not the same as working on a building site or being a fire fighter). I have accepted that flying a jumbo jet is not for me either, and now that I'm no longer able to drive due to having spontaneous attacks of vertigo that cause me to fall over in an instant, I have had to give up my driving licence so won't be a volunteer driving is something else I can't do.

Most jobs have limitations. We may all dream of doing something different or more glamourous or better paid (not saying that care work comes into that category!) but everyone has to be realistic about what the job entails and what they can manage.

In my view, people regularly involved with direct care of other people (whatever their age or vulnerability) should be expected to have the jab and, if they are not willing or able (for medical reasons) they must be willing to take a job that doesn't bring them in such close contact with those people.

I don't think it is either kind or realistic for care staff to wear full PPE as a full-time, permanent thing except when dealing with those who are extremely frail or vulnerable or (for the protection of the staff and other residents/patients) if they have a known transmittable disease. A mask and plastic apron would be enough in most cases, I would have thought, as this seems to have been the norm in hospitals for years, even when patients have been in isolation.

This is just my view.

xx Moy

Davegt profile image
Davegt in reply to MoyB

I am sorry to hear you had to give up driving. I couldn't agree more with your arguments. Well said.

I'm for compulsory vaccination for the reasons some of you others have so ably stated.

Davegt profile image
Davegt in reply to Alberta56

Well said Alberta. Someone with common sense. 👍😀

I do not see how they can make a vaccine mandate for anyone it has not even finished the trials yet! it states its still on trials till 2023 on the Pfizer website and also states it can be pulled off if at anytime the Vaccine is proved to be unsafe before this date comes!

normally vaccines take 15-20 years before put out on the public

So with all this and the fact this is a brand new type of Vaccine which should in its own right not be called a vaccine but a MRNA portion spike

At the moment they are having quite a few bad adverse side affects come back but the Media are chasing not to tell general public of all side affects and just picked done or 2 to tell people even though all is to see on Gov ,uk website on all Vaccines,

The fact is they are causing much harm to people other than what Media are talking about I have been following the side affects since vaccines were rolled out and its way loads more than the blood clots that are causing harm

They have a few sudden deaths many cardiac problems twitching neurological, blindness so unless these side affects have suddenly become not a problem its wrong as they are not getting the coverage of what these vaccines are causing

There is a whole list of side affects including Lymphnodes which I have seen many hypos complain about and GP tells them its not the Vaccine but it all to see on GOV website many have this problem and only after the vaccine , I dont know if they have made public that they are also making cancer scans false negative and 5 weeks later the lymph nodes shrink again, this in itself is concerning as in cancer they act quickly and probably operated on to take so called tumour out ! and the way the NHS silence things it wont be let out that its a vaccine injury thats caused this

People need to do a bit of research on all the vaccines before saying it should be mandate take a look at this which is off SPS which is reliable source of information a list of side affects per manufacture do please take a bit of time and read it as then you may not be so quick to say it should be forced upon people Ive copy pasted bit from this website

you may need to copy paste links as doesnt look like they have posted or google

Then please take a look before you make mind up on it being Mandate

"Suspected side effects (adverse reactions) reported via the Yellow Card scheme

Following publication of the Commission on Human Medicines’ COVID-19 Vaccine Surveillance Strategy, which describes the MHRA’s activities for proactive vigilance of COVID-19 vaccines, the MHRA are producing a weekly (published every Thursday) report covering adverse reactions to available COVID-19 vaccines.

The Coronavirus vaccine – weekly summary of Yellow Card reporting summarises information received via the Yellow Card scheme. It will also include other safety investigations carried out by the MHRA under the COVID-19 Vaccine Surveillance Strategy.

In addition, the weekly summary contains links to Vaccine Analysis Profiles for each vaccine in current use. Vaccine Analysis Profiles list all suspected adverse reactions that have been reported via the Yellow Card scheme for COVID-19 vaccines:

THESE LINKS BELOW REAL DATA SIDE AFFECTS copy paste each one and take a look at what the gov and media are hiding from us all ! its not funny nor to be ignored and this is thought to be between 1 and 10 % of actual real time side affects as many do not realise 3 weeks down the line the side affect is related to vaccine as not informed properly on vaccines !


Vaccine Analysis Profile – Pfizer/BioNTech link side affects


Vaccine Analysis Profile – Oxford University/AstraZeneca link side affects


Vaccine Analysis Profile – Moderna link side affects


Vaccine Analysis Profile – brand unspecified side affects


All the above are genuine info and get updated regularly so always worth looking often to see how the side affects are happening in the uk

and Vaers is in USA which give a much more detailed account to vaccine injuries what health condition the person who has side affect

bearing in mind or yellow card wasnt really working a while back im not sure if thats fixed now so those were not reported as people couldnt get to the end of reporting them

So as I have been watching vaccine injuries for some time and have realised the Government seemed to have forgotten to tell people they are the trial of the vaccines and they had not been tested on humans and the FACT trials do not end till 2023 and have not been honest on real time aide affects . it was only bought out last years soo think about it how could that of been out on trials 15-20 years normal vaccines take

And please do not forget without these trials there will be Zero information what the MRNA vaccines do in long term, it shows to me the portion doesnt always stay in place it should and goes wandering around the body doing other things it shouldnt be doing


And please dont forget the Gov have lifted the right to sue pharmacutacal companies as not finished trials yet and set a rate of 120 grand pay out if you should be unfortunate enough to get a serious side affect from it.. !!

So I say definitely no to mandating these vaccines

Proved they do not stop spreading virus nor do they stop you catching the virus

The gov are not letting people know they could do better than the vaccine by taking high dose Vit D to not get Covid bad and keep other vitamins and minerals at good levels Why I am unsure as maybe dont trust people to do much for them selves so they try force vaccine on people

Fact they now also have drugs that can stop virus getting bad

so why should it be mandate it should infact give us 3 options not just the vaccine.. Time to start researching those who think this vaccine is going to work

They have a poly vaccine which will be out in 5 years hopefully that will go through some proper trials rather than using everyone as an experiment

too many lives have also been ruined by this vaccine already and they are now allowing pregnant women to have it.. shame on the gov for doing this when vitamins are proved to do very well..

Sorry about rant but really people need to research this and not trust what gov and media as they are clearly forgetting to tell us just how many injuries these are causing these health care workers who do not want the jab maybe well informed to the injuries that the vaccine gives people and what ever happened to freedom of choice .

.. its not even a pandemic it is an epidemic listen at next press conference they have been for months after they were told they could get sued for calling it a pandemic when its only ever been an epidemic. more people died in 2008 that they did in the covid year,

By the way I am not anti vaccine at all I am in fact pro vaccines that are proved safe and gone through the usual trials ! just this one that has not even finished the trial period I object to it being made mandate for anyone even long trialed ones have side affects, they need to be testing peoples genetics as well Im sure they play a huge role especially as its a MRNA vaccinea ! It doesnt how much money they through at this vaccine time is the truth to side affects money can not buy everything. and you can not speed up time to find out full extent of injuries that are caused by vaccine

Pascha1 profile image
Pascha1 in reply to Pascha1

`I think what would protect the vunerable in these homes more than a vaccine would be proper ~PPE for the staff and get all the vulnerable bit d, b12, Vit c, iron, zinc. copper and all vitamins and minerals and they will see a fall in covid maybe even get rid off it if the whole population had these all had them in top of the range..

Davegt profile image
Davegt in reply to Pascha1

At the risk of repeating myself. A temporary order was issued last October that, subject to MHRA approval, vaccine could be administered LEGALLY and was/is not a trial. That order will either be renewed from this October for a further 12 months or will gain full approval from MHRA. Even full approval has to be renewed every 5 years, I believe, as there is constant monitoring of efficacy and serious side effects. The idea that currently this is just a "trial" is a misrepresentation by certain sources. We now have just under 50% of England's population fully vaccinated. Some think this is just a trial! That sounds like it has come from antivaxxers who are a menace!

Pascha1 profile image
Pascha1 in reply to Davegt

On gov website it says there revising authorisation every month ! it has emergency authorisation as you say it has not got full authorisation yet !

Tell me have they lifted the protection to the pharma manufacturers so they are now liable for any vaccine injuries ? I dont believe they have yet

So liability is down to the tax payer who will be coughing up the basic £120.000 funding which isnt anything these days if you are left unable to work !

and in the meantime Pharma are exempt from liability

Pharma are making huge profits rom all the vaccines sold to our government and we foot the bill for injuries

In my eyes till they put the liability back onto on Pharma thats when I would say trials are over

until then I personally see it as still in trials and should be a persons choice not mandatory

I am not anti vaccines I have had many and not thought twice about having itthey have all been through years of trials which is on average between 10-20 years are classed as safe in short term and long term yes side affects 10-20 years of trials in Humans

Fact is now they are saying that the vaccine is to protect you as does not stop you getting covid nor does it stop you spreadinging it, it protects you from getting covid bad !

fact is a vey small % and is in over 85s and those obese with under lying health issues and BAME communities..

you say " there is constant monitoring of efficacy and serious side effects".

Yes exactly they are constantly monitoring serious side affects as it has not been out long enough to what side effects will occur!

I believe they are watching for serious side affects for 2 years to get the data from it all? .. is that that not that what a trial does?

in trials they watch out for years to see what serious side effect as they do not know without trials ,

Sorry no one can guess all side effects and what we are seeing on all manufacturers aide affects are only between 1-10% of actual real data as this clinical trial is un supervised a

Most people are basically told and expecting a side effect 24 hrs after the vaccine as have not been fully informed to report anything that happens after the vaccine for years as it may or may not be a side effect even if they dont think its related all needs to be reported and from what I see Drs are saying its not related and after reading what people are getting I go check the data recorded I see 1000's have reported it as a side effect

Side effect data is only as good if all is reported if not it not an honest report

The fact is the media talking about a few side affects thats probably only because other countries have reported them out in public the blood clots were happening from the beginning but the Media said nothing or did the gov

its on that SPS site the link to all side effects for all to see just why are the media not shouting about them have they been gagged ?

So basically its still on trial how ever much they are trying to sugar coat it

All side effects listed on manufacturers are in fact just short term side effects!

Fact is absolutely no one knows long term effects only time can tell that and thats the reason they put vaccines and drugs on proper trials for years

gejay profile image
gejay in reply to Pascha1

With you on all that you have said. People could watch "The uk Colum" for proper news.

2greys profile image
2greys in reply to gejay

CONSPIRACY-PSEUDOSCIENCE and had a temporary ban imposed by YouTube for anti vaxxing content. Low Credibility and Low Factual Reporting Ratings.

Charlie_G profile image
Charlie_G in reply to 2greys

Agreed, 2greys. Not a reputable source of factual information.

Most definitely, we dont hear doctors nurses ,ambulance saying not having it ,working with the elderly mostly frail ,in one respect they are nursing the aged and frail ,so care workers come on get your vaccine, and carry on the great job you are already doing

CDPO16 profile image
CDPO16 in reply to Alice70

I have read that some nurses, particularly in the London area for some reason, have refused to have the vaccine.

Alice70 profile image
Alice70 in reply to CDPO16

I can't say for sure all nurses had vaccines, I'm feel sure that as covid got worse abig majority did

CDPO16 profile image
CDPO16 in reply to Alice70

Yes, I agree but I think that the majority of care staff did too.

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