Priti Patel, the Home Secretary, has said that ministers are working to move police and other frontline workers up the priority list for the Covid vaccine.
Priti Patel on vaccine priority
There is “a lot of work taking place in government right now” on the issue Priti Patel detailed during an interview with the BBC.
The government advisory committee on vaccines has announced that it will take into account factors such as exposure risk and occupation in the vaccine rollout’s next phase.
However the most vulnerable are still being prioritised for the vaccine first with the government attempting to give everyone in the top four priority groups a first dose by mid-February.
When asked on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme if she wanted to see police officers “bumped up the queue” for the vaccine, Priti Patel said: “It’s both police, fire and other frontline workers. And the health secretary and I are working to absolutely try and make that happen. This isn’t just something we are thinking about. There is a lot of work taking place in government right now. If the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation [JCVI] says that is a possibility, we can make it happen. We have the supply, we have the logistical plans in place, we will absolutely work to make that happen.”
The Home Secretary went on to say that Matt Hancock, the Health Secretary, was “supporting all our efforts across government on this” and that she was speaking to the National Police Chiefs Council and the Met Police Commissioner about getting officers “ready to take the vaccine when that comes”.
Professor Anthony Harnden, the deputy chair of the JCVI, announced that phase two of the vaccine rollout would continue to work down the priority list through the over-50s.