Aged care workers have labelled the Covid-19 vaccine roll out “a giant stuff-up” in a survey revealing workers’ anger and frustration at vaccine delays and uncertainty about where to be vaccinated.
The snap survey of more than 250 aged care workers conducted over the weekend by United Workers Union revealed 214 of those aged care workers had not yet received their first Covid-19 vaccination.
The survey also revealed almost two thirds of the aged care workers surveyed – or 158 workers from more than 50 employers – reported their facilities only offered Covid-19 vaccines as “leftovers” after residents were vaccinated.
“It’s a disgrace that in the shadow of Anzac Day, Covid-19 vaccinations meant to protect older Australians and aged care workers have been delayed,” Carolyn Smith, aged care director of United Workers Union, said today.
“The survey highlights failures in the Covid-19 vaccine roll out that was supposed to prioritise aged care workers as 1A with on-site vaccinations kicking off in late February.
“The survey findings indicate many aged care residents and aged care workers going without any Covid-19 vaccinations at all.
“Other findings show significant numbers of aged care workers being told to go to their GP for Covid-19 vaccines.
“Both these results suggest a total collapse of the initial Covid-19 vaccine roll out plans that was supposed to be conducted for all workers on-site, and prioritised ahead of the general population.
“Once again the Morrison Government has failed to meet its responsibility to keep older Australians safe.
“These findings raise real questions about the way aged care workers are treated in the Covid-19 vaccine roll out.
“If the goal is to protect older Australians and aged care workers, these survey findings suggest Covid-19 vaccinations in aged care are not happening fast enough, widely enough or well enough.”
Survey findings: Poor coverage of the Covid-19 vaccination:
Only offered leftovers:
Uncertainty about where to get the jab:
Impact of the rollout on aged care workers:
Statements from aged care workers:
“I am highly upset and frustrated with how aged care workers haven’t been given what we were promised. Are we not important enough to get it?” Aged care worker, Western Australia
“To much confusion, lack of information in regards to when we will get our shots, where we will get them, limited information from Government, I do not know of one single person or resident that has had a Covid shot.” Aged care worker, South Australia
“Outrageous that they would come to a facility and vaccinate the residents, but the people who come and go and in turn could bring the COVID into the facility are not bothered with. Absolute joke.” Aged care worker, Queensland
“Personally I feel like I am nothing in this industry. I don’t understand how the vaccine could be given to the elderly and not the carers.” Aged care worker, Western Australia
“”The leftovers were given just to the bosses and administration staff, not enough for the rest of the personal carers.” Aged care worker, Queensland
“We want to know when and where can we have our second dose of vaccines because there’s no clear instruction what’s going to happen next.” Aged care worker, South Australia