North Wales health board staff facing increasing levels abuse from people attending vaccination sites
Staff and volunteers working across North Wales are facing increasing levels of abuse from people attending vaccination centres, according to the health board.
Betsi Cadwaldar has said that non of its staff should expect “to come to work and be abused” and has warned that police will be contacted if people are abusive.
Ffion Johnstone, the board’s west area director, said: “In recent weeks our hard working vaccination staff and volunteers have experienced an increase in abuse from people attending our vaccination sites.”
“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.”
In a further update on the vaccination programme, the health board said its teams have now administered more than 1,230,000 COVID-19 vaccines, including 164,338 booster jabs across North Wales.
“To date we have administered just over 22 per cent of all booster vaccines in Wales. This is in line with our share of the eligible population.” Ffion Johnstone said.
“As of today, 69 per cent of those eligible have received their booster, with a further 17 per cent booked in for their booster. More people 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 we will automatically invite you as soon as it is your turn.” She said.
On speeding up COVID-19 vaccination delivery, Ffion Johnstone said: “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.”
On drop in clinics for those aged 12-15, Ffion Johnstone said: “An up-to-date list of drop in clinics to allow those aged 12-15 to receive a first dose is available on our website here.”
“Please remember that even if you have had COVID-19 it is still recommended that you come forward for your first dose.”
“Those under 18 who have recently had the virus should ideally wait 12 weeks until they get their vaccination, unless they are in a group that is at greater risk of serious illness.”
“We want young people to make an informed decision about vaccination, based on up to date information available from trusted sources. A good place to start is the Public Health Wales COVID-19 Vaccination Guide for Children and Young People, which can be found on our website.”
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