Nearly 30% of St. George's Staff Not Yet Vaccinated

Hospital launches campaign to encourage take up targeted at BAME employees

Hannah Packham with donated painting. Picture: St. George's

Nearly three in ten staff at St George’s Hospital have not yet had their first dose of the coronavirus vaccine.

Trust board papers for this week said just 68 per of Trust staff had attended the clinic for their first dose.

This has since increased to 71.6 per cent as of March 22.

In her report Chief Executive Jacqueline Totterdell said the Trust has launched a new campaign to encourage staff to get their vaccine “with targeted communications to engage our BAME staff, where take up is lower.”

She said it was “key” to “encourage managers to engage with their teams, and have ‘confident conversations’ with staff who are hesitant, or unsure.”

A spokesperson for St George’s added: “Of course, we want as many staff as possible to get the Covid-19 vaccine – it is safe, and proven to be effective against the virus.

“We have extended the opening hours of the vaccine clinic here at the Trust, which is now open to staff from 8am-7.30pm, seven days a week. Staff also don’t need to book an appointment for their first dose – they can just drop-in to the clinic, and at any point during their shift.

“We are running weekly online question and answer sessions, and providing a range of resources – both printed, and digital – to help staff make an informed decision about the jab.”

The Trust is also sharing case studies of staff getting their vaccine on social media.

As of 22 March, there are 69 covid-positive patients in the hospital.

Of these, 19 are being treated in intensive care, and 50 are being cared for on the wards.

Sadly, since March 2020, 748 patients have died and tested positive for the virus at the trust.

Ms Totterdell said in her report that the hospital has been able to slightly reduce the number of ITU beds it has open from a high of 129 during the New Year peak.

She said: “ITU surge areas are gradually being converted back into ward areas, but we expect to maintain a potentially higher number of ITU beds as part of business as usual, and going forward.

“As the immediate operational pressures of the second Covid-19 surge begin to ease, we are increasingly focused on elective recovery to ensure our patients get the care and treatment they need.”

Sian Bayley - Local Democracy Reporter

March 23, 2021