Plan needed to jab students starting university, say Labour

Scottish Labour has warned thousands of students could miss out ahead of university courses starting.

Plan needed to jab students starting university, say Labour iStock

An urgent plan is needed to ensure that young people set to start university are given their coronavirus vaccination, ministers have been told.

Scottish Labour has called on the Scottish Government to work with universities in order to give those starting courses this autumn are given protection from the virus.

Last month, health secretary Humza Yousaf said that the vaccination programme in Scotland will be extended to international students.

Michael Marra, Scottish Labour’s education spokesperson, warned of the risk that many students may not have received their vaccination for the beginning of universities re-starting following the summer break.

“Our young people have missed out on too much already,” said Marra, an MSP for North East Scotland.

“The Scottish Government must work with our universities to ensure that thousands of new students do not also miss out on protection from the vaccine.

“Simply having been offered an appointment is not enough. This could be weeks away and with progress still to be made in vaccinating 18-29 years olds there is a risk many will not be covered in time.

“By co-ordinating work with Universities all of these new students could be contacted within days and specific arrangements made.

“These are the young Scots so badly let down by the SQA scandal. They must not be let down again.”

He added: “There are specific challenges with those who are 17 years old and about to enter university or college.

“If vaccination is cleared for under 18s they should be at the front of the queue. It is a small group, easily identifiable and ready to go.”

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