Vaccination as Condition of Deployment (VCOD) measures set to be cancelled

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Regulations requiring healthcare workers to be fully vaccinated by 1 April should no longer be applied, the Health Secretary Rt Hon Sajid Javid MP announced to Parliament on the evening of 31 January.

Government onsultation was opened between 9 and 16 February, once the Government has considered responses to the consultation it will move for the two statutory instruments covering VCOD in care homes and in other care settings to be nullified, likely before the end of February. This will mean the legislation making VCOD a requirement is removed.

In the meantime, employers have been instructed by NHS England: “This change in Government policy means we request that employers do not serve notice of termination to employees affected by the VCOD regulations.”

The Health Secretary also told Parliament that he has written to regulators, NHS England and the CQC to request that they tighten measures and requirements for vaccinations received by staff. His letter has not been published, but the response to it from the GMC and Academy of Royal Medical Colleges is linked to above.

In his statement to MPs on 31 January, Mr Javid said the policy had been right in retrospect, “given the severity of Delta”.

Note: Londonwide LMCs previously issued this guidance on VCOD which was circulated as part of our January newsletter. It is no longer applicable following the announcement of 31 January.

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