Following a special meeting of the Social Partnership Forum (SPF) on 6 August 2009 involving the Department of Health, NHS Trade Unions and NHS Employers, to discuss the implications of the swine flu pandemic on the NHS and its workforce, the partners have welcomed the recommendation of the Joint Committee on Vaccination & Immunisation to prioritise front line NHS staff for immunisation.

Accepting the recommendations, Secretary of State for Health Andy Burnham has announced priority groups for the swine flu vaccination. A list of the priority groups is included in the DOH letter to Health and Social Care staff which has been published by David Nicholson, NHS Chief Executive.
Click to read letter from Department of Health as a PDF
For full details of the priority groups and a range of supporting materials, please visit the Department of Health website swine flu pages www.dh.gov.uk

In addition to the priority groups, the vaccine will be made available to frontline NHS and social care staff. Further information and operational advice about the staff immunisation programme will be sent to the service over the coming weeks. Although accepting the vaccine will be entirely voluntary, UNISON would encourage members to take up the offer of swine flu vaccine, alongside the annual vaccine for winter flu.

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