Half of staff at some GP practices are off sick due to coronavirus, according to a medical director, as care homes, surgeries and hospitals feel the effects of tens of thousands of staff absences due to Covid-19.
The Government has pledged to vaccinate 15million high-priority groups by the middle of February and all care home residents by the end of the month but high levels of staff absences are having an impact on the ability to deliver jabs, according to senior doctors.
Staff shortages are so severe in some care homes that they are refusing to accept patients discharged from hospital, according to the Observer.
Half of staff at some GP practices are off sick due to coronavirus, according to a medical director (file image)
More than 46,000 hospital staff are currently off work sick with the virus, Dr Chaand Nagpaul, chairman of the British Medical Association, warned members in a letter.
He said that giving frontline staff the jabs is the only way to deliver the vaccine programme to end the pandemic.
Meanwhile, one in four clinical and administrative staff is unable to work in Kent.
John Allingham, the medical director of a committee for GPs across the county, said up to half of staff are absent at some practices.
Martin Marshall (pictured), chairman of the Royal College of General Practitioners, said even if all staff returned to work practices would still not be able to hit the target of 2million jabs a week
Martin Marshall, chairman of the Royal College of General Practitioners, said even if all staff returned to work practices would still not be able to hit the target of 2million jabs a week.
‘There are enough right now to deliver the limited supplies that we’ve got,’ he said.
‘But we certainly haven’t got enough staff to deliver a much larger programme in two or three weeks’ time, while at the same time as continuing to deliver the flu vaccination programme and delivering normal business in general practice as well.’