Senior MP puts Shelagh Fogarty's accusation of 'poor communication' to Matt Hancock

21 January 2021, 14:24

By Fiona Jones

Father of the House and Conservative MP Sir Peter Bottomley questions Matt Hancock on the quality of communication from the NHS after Shelagh Fogarty stated those who are housebound do not know when they will be vaccinated.

Shelagh wrote a piece today, stating that housebound and elderly people without support networks are missing out on vaccination because of poor communication by the NHS.

Father of the House and Conservative MP Sir Peter Bottomley reiterated Shelagh's point to Matt Hancock today, asking for clarity on how housebound people will receive the vaccine.

The Health Secretary responded: "We will offer vaccination to everybody in the top four categories, over seventies, clinically extremely vulnerable, and health and social care workers, including the residents in care homes by 15th February.

"The exact order within that queue is for a local area to decide and sometimes people might get invited to two different methods of vaccination, whether to one of the big sites and by their local GP.

"For people who are housebound, there are roving teams led by the local care networks to get out and vaccinate them. The offer will come and people should be assured as of today around two-thirds of all over 80s have been vaccinated.

"We will get to everyone and make sure everyone gets that offer to be vaccinated by 15th Feb."

Sir Peter reflected on the answer given by the Health Secretary with Shelagh, and asked people to be reassured that their vaccination time will come.

"In the meantime I want to make sure that time is as short as possible with as little anxiety which is why I picked up your words about who are going to the mass centres, who are going to go to the local hubs, and who will get the jab at home.

"I hope I've helped in Parliament."

He acknowledged, "The numbers of lives that could be saved if we could overcome communication would be in the hundreds if not in the thousands."

Sir Peter Bottomley added, "By putting detailed questions to the Secretary of State, they don't always have to have the answers straight away but they are talking with the others in the NHS England...to find ways of making things better."