Government's mandatory vaccination consultation could be completed in a fortnight

Number 10 said it understood the consultation into mandatory vaccinations for health workers could be completed in two to three weeks.

On Monday, the Government announced the plan to abandon the requirement for health and social care staff to be fully vaccinated against coronavirus by April 1, pending a consultation.

When asked by reporters when a change could be enacted, the Prime Minister’s official spokesman said: “My understanding is that there is a consultation that will last two to three weeks, and I think DHSC will be able to confirm.

“Obviously we would look at this both for NHS and for care workers, and as we’ve said we’ll always keep these measures under review, and that’s what this consultation will do.”

He said NHS trusts had been advised that unvaccinated staff should not lose their jobs for failing to receive their first jab in the coming weeks.

“I believe DH – and DH can correct me – have made clear through NHS England that they shouldn’t be looking to remove anyone from their posts in the NHS while that consultation is ongoing,” he added.

NHS England’s latest figures as of January 23 showed that 127,515 NHS and domiciliary care staff working in registered settings had not yet received a first dose of a Covid-19 vaccine.

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