Following questions from members on the availability of Flu shots for Operational Staff the following email has been received from Lisa Grant, Project Coordinator Safety, Health and Wellbeing Workstream, Integration Programme:

This week the government announced that funded flu vaccinations will be available to all high risk and vulnerable groups from 18 March. This includes pregnant people, people over 65 years of age, people with certain pre-existing chronic conditions and healthcare workers. 

GPs, pharmacies and occupational health providers have been asked to defer administering privately funded vaccinations until Monday 13th April to allow for high risk and vulnerable patients and healthcare workers to have priority access. This deferral includes Fire and Emergency’s planned volunteer vaccination programme.

Rhys Jones has contacted the Ministry of Health to discuss Fire and Emergency being an exception to this deferral, or for firefighters to be captured under the definition of healthcare workers. We are still waiting to hear the outcome of those discussions.

We are aware that given COVID-19 there is an increased interest in flu vaccinations this year and there may be anxiety over any delay. Please be assured that we are advocating for firefighters and their access to flu vaccination this year. We will let you know as soon as possible how that will take place.

Pending an answer to the Chief Executives question to the M.O.H, the expectation is that Flu shots should be available for Operational staff from the 1st May.

If anyone has any questions please contact one of your Local delegates.

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