Coronavirus: Vaccination

Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered on 23 May 2023.

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Photo of Ben Everitt Ben Everitt Conservative, Milton Keynes North

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department is taking to (a) ensure that the necessary clinical guidelines are in place to identify adverse reactions to the covid-19 vaccines and (b) ensure that NHS staff in contact with potential patients with adverse reactions receive adequate training.

Photo of Maria Caulfield Maria Caulfield The Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Health and Social Care, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade) (Minister for Women)

Every vaccine deployed in the United Kingdom is assessed by teams of scientists and clinicians and only authorised once it has met robust standards of safety, quality, and effectiveness set by Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).

Whilst severe adverse reactions are extremely rare, it is important that clinicians are fully trained in identifying and treating patients within their care. To ensure this, the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) has published various pieces of guidance for healthcare workers, which provides detailed information regarding adverse reactions following vaccination, available at the following link:

UKHSA and other professional groups have also developed a comprehensive training package to ensure vaccines are administered safely, including how to deal with possible adverse reactions to a vaccine. Safety is the utmost priority of any public health vaccination programme and all healthcare workers administering vaccines are trained to the highest standards and are expected to follow all required clinical considerations via the NHS and UKHSA approved training programme.

Guidance on COVID-19 vaccination training to support healthcare workers involved in delivering the programme is available at the following link:

A competency assessment tool is available at the following link:

NHS England guides sites to use this training. Accountability for staff being trained sits with the organisation delivering the service alongside an individual’s professional responsibility.

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