‘We pray the Government can deliver’ – York care home boss on PM’s vaccination promise

Ian Cormack receives the Oxford/AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine in Edinburgh. Photograph: Russell Cheyne / PA Wire
7 Jan 2021 @ 12.23 pm
| Health

Boris Johnson has said the rollout of coronavirus vaccines to care homes “needs to be stepped up” – and the boss of one care home business is hoping that the PM is true to his word.

Mr  Johnson told the House of Commons: “I do want to see an accelerated rollout of vaccinations in care homes.

“So far, I believe that 10% of care home residents and 14% of care home staff have received the vaccine – but that clearly needs to be stepped up.”

The Independent Care Group, which represents more than 200 providers in North Yorkshire and York, said it is heartening that care homes are a high priority and have been promised the vaccine by the end of the month.

Chairman Mike Padgham said: “But we have had similar promises before and we pray the Government can deliver this time. We need a dose of realism.

“If the government can deliver the vaccine to homes by the end of January, we want to see them do it swiftly.

“If they can’t then they must be honest and tell us a realistic timescale. There is no time to lose.”

So far, Mr Padgham said, access to vaccination in North Yorkshire has so far been “patchy”, he said, including for homes which are Covid-free.

He said: “I welcome the fact that care homes are still a priority, there is a way round vaccinating people in care homes and staff where there has been an outbreak.

“But cohorting and getting routes through (for vaccination teams) is not going to be easy in smaller, non purpose-built homes.”