Sector

12 January 2021

When will pest professionals get vaccinated against Covid-19?

With phase one of the UK's largest inoculation programme in progress, we've been asked by many people when key workers, like pest controllers, will get access to the Covid-19 vaccines.

When will pest professionals get vaccinated against Covid-19

It's likely that you already know someone who has received or will shortly receive one of the three approved Covid-19 vaccines, however as we keep being reminded – Covid-19 is a marathon, not a sprint.

As customer-facing workers, regularly in other people's homes and businesses protecting public health, it's only right that pest management staff are vaccinated against the virus to protect them and their clients.

The UK, Northern Ireland and Scotland governments have all acknowledged that pest management is essential during the pandemic – so does that push our sector to the top of the list?

Phase one

Currently, 2.4 million vaccines have been administered to around two million people in the UK.

The vaccine's rollout is currently being prioritised for the 25 million most vulnerable people in the UK. This includes:

  • Residents in care homes for older adults and their carers
  • 80-year-olds and over, and frontline health and social care workers
  • 75-year-olds and over
  • 70-year-olds and over, and clinically extremely vulnerable individuals
  • 65-year-olds and over
  • 16- to 64-year-olds with serious underlying health conditions
  • 60-year-olds and over
  • 55-year-olds and over
  • 50-year-olds and over.

Only pest professionals who meet the above criteria are likely to receive a vaccine before May 2021. The further down the list you fall, the later you're likely to receive the vaccine.

Phase two

The rest of the UK will be vaccinated in phase two.

Details of phase two haven't been published yet. However, there is some indication that key workers and customer-facing positions will be vaccinated first.

Professor Wei Shen Lim, chair of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation's Covid-19 working group, has suggested that your occupation will determine when you get the vaccine in phase two.

He said: 

Phase two of the programme will take into account the range of other professions and key workers who would benefit from vaccination, and protection, particularly if they can't avoid travelling to work for instance, or they might be exposed at work.

Professor Wei Shen Lim, Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation, Covid-19 working group

How close to the top of the list will pest professionals be in phase two?

We're not sure how the government will prioritise who gets the vaccine first in phase two, or if one group of key workers will be prioritised above another.

BPCa writes to helth secretary to ask for vaccine for pest control

BPCA has written to the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care to ask that pest professionals and other key workers are prioritised appropriately.

We have asked that the government takes into account:

  1. The infrastructure a key worker protects
  2. The number of sites a key worker visits
  3. The amount of people a key worker comes into contact with while on duty
  4. The sensitivity of these sites (ie, hospitals, care homes, schools, food factories, etc).

BPCA Chief Exec, Ian Andrew, said:

We're not asking for pest controllers or other key workers to jump the queue entirely. We're simply asking the government to be pragmatic in how they prioritise people, taking into account their occupation, exposure to other people and sensitive environments they work in.

Ian Andrew, BPCA Chief Exec

What should you do to prepare for the vaccine?

You'll be invited to book an appointment to get a vaccine as soon as it's your turn, probably by phone or letter.

You can't pay to get the vaccine sooner, nor can you request to get the vaccine early. 

It's worth making sure your medical information is up-to-date and that your GP knows you are a key worker. You can write to your GP or send an email. However, we do not advise calling to update your medical information, which may put unnecessary stress on your service. 

NEED SUPPORT? WE'RE HERE TO HELP

For the latest Covid-19 advice for pest professionals, please see our free help pages.

bpca.org.uk/covid19

Members are encouraged to get in touch with the team if you need bespoke support.

hello@bpca.org.uk

Source: Online

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