Publish vaccine plans to prevent postcode lottery, say Tories

The Scottish Conservatives said it was still waiting to see the plans for each NHS board for the rollout of the Pfizer vaccine.

Publish vaccine plans to prevent postcode lottery, say Tories STV News

Health board vaccine delivery plans should be published to prevent a “postcode lottery” from developing, according to the Scottish Conservatives.

The party said it was still waiting to see the plans for each NHS board, though the Scottish Government said claims of any postcode lottery were “unfounded and irresponsible”.

The health secretary has offered to meet with opposition parties to discuss further details of how the vaccine will be delivered.

Priority groups for the jabs are decided by the UK-wide Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation.

Scotland’s vaccination programme got under way on December 8, with vaccinators and frontline NHS staff being the first to receive the jab.

Scottish Conservative health spokesman Donald Cameron, said: “The publication of health board Covid vaccine delivery plans would go a long way to preventing a postcode lottery, like we saw occur with the flu jab shambles earlier this year.

“Opposition MSPs seeking to scrutinise plans and get answers for their constituents are struggling to get information from the SNP and health boards.

“The answers we do get are frequently sluggish and incomplete.

“The public needs to know every detail has been covered. Secrecy will not benefit anyone.

“Teething problems with the Covid vaccine must be sorted quickly or they risk spiralling and hampering efforts to fight back against this pandemic.”

The Scottish Government said NHS boards were working on their own delivery plans.

A spokesman said: “This claim is unfounded and irresponsible.

“This is a national vaccination programme which sets out clearly the parameters within which NHS boards will lead local delivery. Locally, NHS boards’ own delivery planning is well underway.

“It is putting in place local recruitment and deployment of staff, with boards and local authority partners identifying locations that are as accessible and local as possible and securing the support that they need — including the national support that we are receiving from the armed services — to set up and manage local centres in a Covid-safe way.

“The First Minister gave an update on numbers of vaccinations on Thursday at FMQs and the Scottish Government will publish weekly updates on the vaccination programme, from next Wednesday onwards.

“This week, MSPs were provided with the latest guidance on our Covid-19 vaccine delivery plans, and the health secretary has offered to provide further briefing to Mr Cameron and other party spokespeople.”

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