Healthcare workers should receive boosters

19 October 2021

Labour health spokesperson Duncan Smith has called for all healthcare workers to receive a booster vaccine. As case numbers continue to rise, Deputy Smith said we have the capacity to provide booster shots to the frontline quickly to protect workers against the virus over the months ahead.

Deputy Smith said:

“I welcome the recommendation from NIAC to provide booster shots to people over 60 as we prepare for living with the virus this winter. The Labour Party is also calling on NIAC to consider providing boosters to all frontline healthcare workers. The level of hospitalisations relating to Covid is increasing, so the prudent and careful thing to do is to give our healthcare workers the best possible protection.

“This should be done quickly – we have the capacity in place and have already executed a hugely successful vaccine roll out as a country. Our frontline workers need protection and should be a key priority for the booster vaccine. This decision needs to be made without delay and get ahead of the potential surge of cases in the weeks and months ahead.

“I would also reiterate my call to government to consider providing the flu vaccine free of charge to everyone this year. From the Covid vaccine roll out, we have the infrastructure and institutional knowledge and experience in place to roll this out to all citizens quickly. Doing so has the potential to take the pressure off emergency departments throughout the country this winter season.

“We’re at a critical juncture with Covid and the sensible thing to do is provide an additional layer of protection to hospitals and healthcare workers. We must protect our frontline workers who are preparing to face potential surges in treating people with Covid.”

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