Abuse of covid-19 vaccination staff and volunteers “on the rise” in North Wales, says health board
Abuse of staff and volunteers administering the Covid-19 vaccine is on the rise across North Wales, the region’s health board has said.
Over the last 11 months more than 1.23 million coronavirus vaccines have now been given out across the region, including 164,338 booster jabs.
Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board said it demonstrated the hard work of teams administering the vaccine.
However in the health board’s weekly vaccination update, Ffion Johnstone, the west area director said that there has been a rise in the number of people attending vaccine sites who are being abusive to staff.
Ms Johnstone also warned that the police will be called in some instances if staff are threatened with violence or aggression.
She said: “No one should expect to come to work and be abused, not least our vaccination staff and volunteers, who are working to keep people safe during a pandemic.
“Our staff and volunteers are working incredibly hard to ensure that people receive their vaccination as quickly and as safely as possible.
“Please be patient and treat them with politeness and respect.
“We would also like to remind people that we will not tolerate violence, aggression or abuse towards our staff.
“Anyone who causes alarm or distress to others at any of our vaccination centres may be asked to leave, or in more serious circumstances the police will be contacted.”
As of today, 69 per cent of people eligible for a booster jab in North Wales have received one, with a further 17 per cent booked in.
More people over the age of 40 and with certain underlying health conditions are becoming eligible every day as they cross the minimum six-month qualifying gap since their second dose.
If it has been more than six months since your second dose, there is no need to contact the health board or your GP Practice as you will automatically invite you as soon as it is your turn.
Vaccination is also continuing for 12 to 15 year olds, with drop in clinics available across the region. A full list can be viewed here.
Ms Johnstone added: “As explained in previous updates, our workforce to administer Covid-19 jabs has reduced by around 50 per cent, compared to the initial rollout.
“Our teams are working as quickly and as safely as possible administering more than 3,200 vaccines every day.
“We’re looking at a range of measures to increase the speed of the rollout.
“Our intensive recruitment campaign is ongoing. Once fully trained, new staff are being deployed to our existing sites – increasing the number of people that can be vaccinated on a daily basis.
“We are also hoping to welcome more community pharmacies to the rollout. This has the potential to improve access to the vaccine for people who currently have to travel longer distances to get to a vaccination site.”
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