The views and experiences of thousands of frontline health and social care workers towards the Scottish COVID-19 vaccination programme have been published in a new report from Public Health Scotland.
Gathered through a survey which ran between 5 and 19 March 2021, the findings form part of the evaluation of the programme, with researchers seeking initially to understand the views and experiences of staff who were prioritised by the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) to receive their vaccination from December 2020 onwards.
The survey was completed by over 7,000 participants and covered topics including attitudes towards COVID-19, factors influencing vaccine uptake, experiences of the vaccination process and how the programme could be improved.
Overall, those who responded to the survey were generally positive about their experiences of the programme, with many praising the roll out as being well-organised and speedy. Others highlighted the ease of the vaccination process and the professionalism and care shown by vaccinators.
However, some staff did highlight areas that needed review, such as issues with inconsistent vaccine supplies, difficulties in making and re-arranging appointments, and a lack of ease in accessing some vaccination centres.
Speaking about the impact of the report, Dr Ruth Dryden, Organisational Lead for Vaccination Evaluation at Public Health Scotland, said:
“Our survey provides a snapshot of the experiences of frontline health and social care workers during the first four months of the complex and constantly evolving COVID-19 vaccination programme in Scotland.
“As part of the first two JCVI priority groups, the views of care home and frontline health and social care staff have been instrumental in highlighting what elements worked well, but also where improvements could be made, both for themselves and those they care for."
“The views and experiences expressed in the survey have contributed to shaping the subsequent delivery of the vaccination programme and we thank all who took part for their contributions. The learnings will continue to be hugely influential as we move towards the next phase of programme with COVID-19 booster vaccines in the Autumn.”