Uptake of the UK Government’s winter vaccination programme has been lacklustre, according to new data, particularly among health and social care workers.
While uptake has been satisfactory among older members of the population in Scotland, where the data snapshot was taken, most younger members of the population are yet to take advantage of the Government’s free winter flu and Covid-19 vaccines.
Even those working in health and social care are slow on the uptake for the vaccines – a fact that could prove worrying for the vulnerable members of society that they will be caring for.
This is doubly worrying ahead of winter when the viruses typically spike in cases.
Currently data from Public Health Scotland shows that as of September 2022 only 20.3% (or one in five) of social care workers in the sample group had had the most recent Covid-19 vaccine.
Of other frontline healthcare workers, 38.8% had received the Covid-19 jab as part of the winter vaccine programme.
By comparison, those in the ‘older care home residents’ category (age bracket not specified) sat at an uptake of 85%.
Scotland’s national clinical director is reported by the BBC to have said that the population’s “busy lives” are to blame for the low uptake figures.
It is unclear whether there is a significant difference in vaccine uptake in other parts of the UK.