Coronavirus (COVID-19)

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Petition Include public transport workers in priority groups for covid 19 vaccination

Include public transport workers especially those who are in public facing roles to be included in one of the priority groups for vaccination.

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People who work in public transport come into contact with many people every day. It would therefore be sensible, to include them with the priority groups of people getting vaccinated against covid 19 first.

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Government responded

This response was given on 10 February 2021

For phase I of the vaccine roll-out the key principles of advice by the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation are to reduce mortality, to protect the health and care systems, and save lives.

Read the response in full

The NHS has been working alongside its health and social care partners to ensure the vaccine can be administered safely and effectively as part of the largest vaccination programme undertaken in its history.

The government and the NHS are working hard to ensure everyone who is 70 and over, our health and social care workers and the clinically extremely vulnerable are offered the vaccine by mid-February. Over 7.4 million people across the UK have now received their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine and nearly half a million have received their second dose. There are now over 2700 sites across the United Kingdom (UK) already offering vaccines to those at risk by age and clinical priority. The network will continue to expand and evolve as we progress the deployment in the months ahead. We will expand the programme so all adults can be vaccinated by the autumn.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) is the independent medical and scientific expert body which advises the UK Government on prioritisation for all vaccines. The committee’s membership is made up of practising clinicians and individuals from academia who have considered and continue to consider the impact of Covid-19 and population prioritisation as new data emerges.
For phase one of the vaccine roll-out, the underlying principles at the forefront of the advice by the JCVI are; to reduce mortality, to protect the health and social care systems, and to save lives. Given the current epidemiological situation in the UK, all evidence indicates that the best option for preventing mortality in the initial phase of the programme is to directly protect persons most at risk. Having identified age as being the biggest determining factor to increased mortality, vaccinations have been prioritised to care home residents and staff and those over 80, followed by health and social care workers, then to the rest of the population in order of age and clinical risk factors. Any public transport worker who is identified as being in one of the at-risk cohorts will be contacted by the NHS at the appropriate time based on JCVI advice.

The JCVI continues to review its advice to the government based on the live data it receives. Whilst phase one is currently aimed at reducing mortality based on age and clinical risk factors, phase two may be aimed at vaccinating those at high risk of exposure and/or those delivering key public services. Further data will confirm the next steps going forward and the Department of Health and Social Care will listen carefully to the independent experts and work closely with its partners to best implement this.

The government is working hard to ensure everyone who has been clinically prioritised to receive a vaccine will have access to a vaccine as soon as possible.

Finally, we thank all the key workers in public transport for the incredible work that they have been doing throughout the pandemic, and we give our assurances that we are working hard to ensure everyone who has been clinically prioritised to receive a vaccine will have access to a vaccine as soon as possible.

Department of Health and Social Care

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