Mandatory vaccines for health and care workers: regulations coming into force

The draft regulations making vaccination a condition of deployment for health and social care workers were finally approved by Parliament on 14 December 2021. The regulations (Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities) (Amendment) (Coronavirus) (No. 2) Regulations 2021) place a requirement on health and social care workers deployed to undertake CQC regulated activity who have face-to-face contact with service users, including volunteers, to provide evidence that they have been fully vaccinated against Covid-19. They would need to do so in order to be deployed, though there would be exemptions for certain staff. The policy has been met with concerns by a number of medical and care bodies.

The policy follows the Government’s announcement on 9 November 2021 detailing its new vaccination rules for workers in the health and wider social care sector in England. The new rules will apply to both NHS and independent sector organisations undertaking activities regulated by the CQC. You can read our earlier blog on the announcement here.

The new regulations are due to come into force on 1 April 2022 which leaves a tight timetable for provider implementation. Guidance on implementation has been published by NHSEI and you can read more about the guidance in our earlier blog here. We are expecting ‘phase two’ of the guidance to be published early in the New Year, focusing on the implementation of the new regulations, including a national redeployment framework and advice regarding formal steps for staff who remain unvaccinated on 1 April 2022.

Do get in touch with our team if you require support with your implementation strategy.

Joanna Burrows, Fiona Goodman, Rebecca Pallot and Surbhi Shah

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