Class LFD COVID Test workers as health and social care workers
James made this Freedom of Information request to The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation
Dear The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation,
I am writing to raise a question regarding why those involved in COVID testing with LFD devices are not classified as 'health and social care workers'? Which would allow them to book a vaccination if they would like, just like those working at PCR testing sites can.
I work as a COVID tester in a school where we use LFD tests, processing hundreds of tests an hour.
Some of my roles include:
- Meet and greet
- Test swab assistant
- Test processer
- Training new workers
Therefore, for those that work on these sites, we need to be close to the test subjects, be on hand to offer assistance (due to some understandable reactions to the throat and nose swab) and be hands-on with the test samples as we process the swab.
So we are in a unique position as workers that I would consider to be front line and at a heightened risk, however unable to access vaccination as a result.
Whilst we do of course have our PPE, this is the same for those on PCR testing sites and vaccination centres so I hope you can understand my slight confusion as to why vaccination is not an option for those working at LFD COVID testing sites.
Is this something the JCVI would consider looking into?
Thank you for all the work this last year, and I appreciate any time spent on this matter.
Thank you for your email which has been noted. The Secretariat are dealing
with a large volume of queries concerning the advice of JCVI on priority
groups for COVID-19 vaccination and will endeavour to respond queries on
this. Your patience is gratefully appreciated.
JCVI continues to work on the consideration and review of vaccines for
COVID-19 and advice for the COVID-19 vaccination programme and will
publish further advice at the appropriate time.
The latest statement concerning JCVIs advice on Phase 1 is available at:
The interim JCVI statement on Phase 2 is available at:
The JCVI statement on first dose prioritisation is available at:
The latest published minutes of JCVI meetings are available at:
Further detail on the groups considered a priority and eligible for
COVID-19 vaccination in the first phase of the COVID-19 vaccination
programme is available from the Green Book immunisation against infectious
Disease chapter on COVID-19 at:
Dear James Shaw
Thank you for your email to Public Health England (PHE) dated 08 March
2021 in relation to COVID-19 vaccination priority groups. I work on the
team that handles enquiries and have been asked to respond to your email.
I am sorry to read that you have not received your COVID-19 vaccination.
To make you aware, PHE cannot comment on individual circumstance, however,
we can provide you with the latest guidance and information available.
The list of COVID-19 vaccine priority groups has been published by the
Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI). JCVI is an
independent Departmental Expert Committee and a statutory body supported
JCVI has advised that for Phase 1 of the COVID-19 Vaccine Programme, the
first priorities should be the prevention of COVID-19 mortality and the
protection of health and social care staff and systems.
JCVI has published the prioritisation list for COVID-19 vaccination which
is largely prioritised by age due to the strong association of older age
and mortality from COVID-19. Those considered clinically extremely
vulnerable have also been prioritised for vaccination and those in
clinical risk groups aged 16 years and over as follows:
1. residents in a care home for older adults and their carers
2. all those 80 years of age and over and frontline health and social
3. all those 75 years of age and over
4. all those 70 years of age and over and clinically extremely vulnerable
5. all those 65 years of age and over
6. all individuals aged 16 years to 64 years with underlying health
conditions which put them at higher risk of serious disease and
7. all those 60 years of age and over
8. all those 55 years of age and over (this is the current group being
offered the vaccination)
9. all those 50 years of age and over
Please see: priority groups for coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccination for
If you are aged 55 or over, or clinically vulnerable, you can now book
your own appointment. The easiest way to arrange a vaccination is through
the national booking service which can be accessed
at www.nhs.uk/covid-vaccination. The system allows patients to choose a
time slot and location that suits them.
For Phase 2, JCVI has advised that the offer of vaccination will be
age-based starting with the oldest adults first and proceeding in the
· all those aged 40 to 49 years
· all those aged 30 to 39 years
· all those aged 18 to 29 years
Timings for Phase 2 are not yet confirmed, but please see the following
link for more
Immunisations against Infectious Disease (The Green Book) outlines in more
detail the advice of JCVI on those who should be prioritised and are
eligible for the COVID-19 vaccination during Phase 1 of the programme. The
Green Book is available
Please note that policy on COVID-19 vaccinations is being published by the
Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) and the vaccine roll-out falls
within the remit of NHS England. If you have any further questions about
policy then please contact the DHSC online by clicking this web link
Contact Form: General enquiries or by telephone on 0207 210 4850.
Alternatively, if you have any queries relating to the vaccine roll-out;
please contact NHS England by email at [email address] or by
telephone on 0300 311 22 33.
I hope you find this information helpful and PHE apologises we could not
be of direct assistance on this occasion.
Correspondence and Public Enquiries Officer
Public Health England
www.gov.uk/phe Follow us on Twitter @PHE uk
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