People with learning disabilities need to be prioritised for the COVID-19 vaccine
UPDATE 24/02/2021: All people on the learning disability register should now be prioritised for a Covid vaccine, the joint committee on vaccination has advised the government - click here to read more.
“We know that people with learning disabilities are at least six times more likely to die from COVID-19 than the rest of the population – and since there are more than 1.5 million people in the UK with learning disabilities, it’s our responsibility to do all we can to help protect them – we must prioritise them for the COVID-19 vaccine” said Avalon CEO Larry Hollando.
People with severe learning disabilities are considered part of cohort six on the government’s vaccine priority list. People in cohort six began receiving their vaccinations on February 15 – more than two months after the vaccination programme began in the UK, while people with moderate needs are yet to be prioritised.
It’s a hot topic in the news at the moment – and for good reason. From the news of Jo Whiley’s sister recently testing positive printed in The Telegraph, through to the frustrations aired by Ian Rankin in The Guardian, it’s an important conversation that many in the social care field are joining.
At Avalon we have many incredible customers with learning disabilities. Each and every day we work tirelessly to make sure the people we support are living fulfilling, independent, safe and happy lives.
“I wholeheartedly believe that the assignment of vaccinations should be based on risk. We know the risks for people with learning disabilities are very high, so the lack of communication from the government has felt like inaction for some of the most vulnerable people in our communities,” said Larry.
If you’re an Avalon customer, family member or member of staff, we’ll support you or your loved one through the process of receiving your vaccination. If you want to learn more about the vaccine, you can read information for customers on our website here, and information for adults and staff, here.