Covid vaccines are said to be set to be mandatory for all frontline NHS workers under plans by Health Secretary Sajid Javid.
A formal consultation on making Covid and flu vaccination a condition of employment in the NHS is due to end on 22 October, with iNews reporting that Mr Javid is ready to act quickly and bring this change into place.
After a change in the law, staff in care homes in England have until 11 November to get double vaccinated against Covid, after which point they will be legally barred from work.
The Department for Health and Social Care (DHSC) now reportedly has separate but similar plans to require all NHS frontline staff to be fully vaccinated, unless they are medically exempt.
It is understood that Prime Minister Boris Johnson is fully behind Mr Javid’s belief that unvaccinated health staff pose a risk to the most vulnerable, with it also being a concern in government that unjabbed care home staff have been moving into the NHS.
Professor Dame Clare Gerada, a former president of the Royal College of GPs, has urged the Government to act with caution over any decision to introduce mandatory vaccination.
She told i: “I agree with the Royal Colleges that this could backfire. My main worry is not about anti-vaxers but about the vaccine hesitant. If you are going to push anything it is much better to do so through discussion and consensus. I do worry that this will end up potentially excluding some people, such as those from ethnic minorities, who might be more hesitant to take the vaccine.”