Staff vaccinations ‘shortfall’: Can we take anything at face value in BBC News reports?

By stewartb

Dated 10 February, the BBC News website has an article entitled: “Covid: Care staff vaccinations ‘lagging behind target’ ”.

Source: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-56012869

This is the first sentence of the BBC article: “There is a worrying shortfall in the number of care staff to have had Covid vaccinations, a survey of almost 1,500 services in the UK suggests.

These findings come, according to the BBC journalist, from the National Care Forum (NCF). The NCF is described by the BBC as an organisation which “represents not-for-profit care providers across the UK but mainly in England”. The Executive Director of the NCF said the survey “would appear to indicate that there are big groups of people who haven’t been anywhere near vaccination yet.” And goes on: “.. to get them done within the next five days seems like a bit of a mountain to climb.” The BBC article has this graphic.

Now we know that all Covid-related matters, including vaccinations, and especially matters that impact care homes are important – and politically, they are highly charged. So the content of the BBC article is worth getting right – is it not?

One would have hoped so!  But this is what we learn from the NCF website:

“The National Care Forum (NCF) have carried out a snapshot survey of all members and the responses came from organisations representing 1500 social care services in England over the 8th and 9th February 2021.”

Source: https://www.nationalcareforum.org.uk/ncf-press-releases/vaccine-take-up-among-social-care-workforce/

So not for the first time (the understatement of all time?) BBC News reporting seems to mis-inform.  On what basis is the BBC article justified in implying UK-wide significance for the survey evidence?

BBC Editorial Guidelines – on ‘reporting the UK’

The BBC Guidelines refer to the following under the sub-heading, ‘Signalling’ (with my emphasis):

When our UK audiences are affected differently by a story or issue we are reporting we should make it clear.

“We should properly and proportionately label content that has limited applicability across the UK.

“We should normally explain the difference in the first sentence of our report and in News programmes signal it in the headline as well. News Correspondents should try to refer at least once to the people actually affected by the story in their package.

“The exact method of differentiation will vary from story to story. It may be achieved by:

  • simply stating to which part of the UK a story relates;
  • referring briefly to how things are done in other parts of the UK
  • adopting a more creative “compare and contrast” approach. For example, in a story about schools, highlighting the differences in the curriculum across the country.”

https://www.bbc.co.uk/editorialguidelines/guidance/reporting-the-uk/

It’s hard to conceive of a bigger fail in adhering to these guidelines than the BBC’s overall reporting of Covid matters as they relate to the UK’s four nations and their individual health and social care systems.

Returning to NCF’s other concerns – Westminster’s lack transparency over care homes

In another press statement today, the NCF states this (with my emphasis):

“.. it is totally unacceptable that key COVID data collected from the sector is not being shared with the care sector. …. “

“.. although access to the (‘Capacity Tracker’) portal is available to colleagues at the DHSC, Public Health England, NHS and local authorities, despite numerous and repeated requests from provider organisations and provider representatives like the NCF, access to the reporting and analysis of the data has not been given.

The Executive Director of the NCF notes: “We have asked repeatedly for access to the data and insights that is made available from care providers on the Capacity Tracker. From the progress on vaccination, to visiting, to numbers of positive cases and outbreaks, providers cannot see the overall national picture, nor their more local and regional picture. Apart from the very valid moral argument that the data within the Capacity Tracker is provider data and is being provided at very significant effort and cost, there are some other very strong reasons why access to the national, regional and local data is imperative to helping providers in their response in the pandemic.”

So the NCF is stating that: “providers cannot see the overall national picture” regarding Covid and care homes in England!

How much less informed is the public in England, a public that is in addition subjected to BBC mis-information/obfuscation and selective omission?

15 thoughts on “Staff vaccinations ‘shortfall’: Can we take anything at face value in BBC News reports?

  1. In this case one cannot possibly forgive the ABC ( BBC)
    As they most certainly know of what they do
    Therefore it is a pre meditated act and as such warrants the severest of sentence

    Like

  2. The Guardian is also carrying the NCF story. Again clearly England focussed and not mentioning Scotland’s stats.

    https://www.theguardian.com/society/2021/feb/11/40-percent-of-staff-at-biggest-uk-care-home-firm-hc-one-have-not-had-covid-vaccine

    A quote in the article from the DHSC contains the ‘all eligible care homes…’ What constitutes an ‘eligible’ as opposed to an ‘ineligible’ care home? A chilling word which seems to be attached now to care homes in England to hide the fact that not all care homes have been vaccinated in the same way as ‘offered’ was.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Legerwood
      All this is beginnig to smack of the early language and propaganda as used in commencing their genocidal policies of the disabled in 1938 Nazi actions
      I exaggerate not, because this is very similar to their press releases as their actions commenced
      From little acorns can grow mighty oaks that soon rot

      Like

      1. Seems ‘eligible’ covers those who are not positive for Covid and are clinically well enough to have it. And as you say those in Care Homes that do not have an outbreak.

        Like

  3. Keep on DIGGING AWAY

    THEY ARE LYING TO THE VERY PEOPLE WHO THEY HAVE NOW “FORCED” TO PAY ADDITIONAL FEES
    TO ENSURE MORE WAGES FOR STAFF
    WHO ARE INACCURATE WITH STORIES AIMED AT
    ADVISING THE PUBLIC

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Funny how it was England that won WW2, It was England that won the World Cup….etc

    However it is now UK deaths, UK infection rates….slippage in UK care worker inoculation rates.

    England if ahead…UK when behind.

    It must be difficult to remember which Nation to insert to match the appropriate spin being presented.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. And just now on CH4 news in an item on pregnancy, underlying health conditions and vaccination they have figures for England, Wales and Northern Ireland – no Scotland and no explanation as to why no mention of Scotland. It may be that we do not record such figures but I would be really surprised if that was the case given how much data we collect across the board all of which is published and easily accessible.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. The BBC should be the premier independent news source in Scotland, the U.K. and the world.
    Instead it is now a mouthpiece for a corrupt London Tory oligarchy, hiding facts, spreading fake news, and distorting the truth for the purpose of its masters.
    After being threatened by break-up, or licence revoking, the BBC has capitulated its independence and its reputation. Ending the licence fee would have ended the BBC, but that was never the plan.
    The plan was for an English Pravda, dedicated to Boris and whoever follows him. And it has worked with Tory placement at the top, and Unionist puppets throughout the rest.

    Liked by 4 people

  6. The ‘story’ is just nonsense, Just made up, it makes no sense at all. What are they trying to say. Just misusing data. It has no possible purpose. Waste of space, paper and time. The BBC nonsense.

    ‘The problem of the lack of representational data’? Who knows.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. There is information on the website of the National Care Forum about vaccinations in care homes in England.The information comes from a survey of 700 homes.

    “Vic Rayner, Executive Director at the NCF says:

    “The incredible drive by community health colleagues and care homes working together in partnership has resulted in nearly 100% [it is “approximately 95%” ] of all homes within this survey being visited by a roving vaccination team. This is a brilliant achievement.

    “However, the prioritisation of staff vaccination does not appear to have been followed through with the same level of effectiveness. Whilst it is encouraging that the vast majority of organisations who responded noted that 50% or more of staff have been vaccinated, only 27% reported vaccination of over 70% of their staff.

    “We need to learn quickly from the reasons why organisations are stating that staff have not been vaccinated and wherever possible remove the barriers at a local and national level. We need to eliminate the practices highlighted by members where staff have been unable to get vaccination appointments at local settings, or when vaccination teams come into a home and do not have sufficient vaccine to cover staff as well as residents. We must also make sure that any staff who express concerns about vaccination have the full opportunity to have all their questions answered, and then with their agreement be rapidly incorporated at the front of the queue in local vaccination centres. In many ways staff vaccination is proving to be the harder part of the equation, yet we know that it is critical for the safety of staff and to support the huge pressure on staffing caused by absence that care homes have been working with over recent months.

    “The NHS England target to vaccinate all residents and staff by the 24th January has been missed. The clock is now ticking on the stated government objective of getting all those in groups 1 to 4 vaccinated by the 15th February. The experience of care home staff to date would suggest there is much work to be done to make this a reality, particularly when going forward, almost all vaccinations will take place in the community and care home staff who should be vaccinated first, run the very real risk of being lost in the rush.”

    Like

    1. Sam
      The big clue to what appears failure to vaccinate care homes is the following words as stated by Vic Rayner
      Homes being visited by a ROVING Vaccination team
      Well the word Roving tells you a lot

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Sorry, missed the link.

    https://www.nationalcareforum.org.uk/ncf-press-releases/vaccine-take-up-in-care-homes/

    Some more news from this useful source.

    https://www.nationalcareforum.org.uk/ncf-press-releases/vaccine-take-up-among-social-care-workforce/

    “When examining the reasons for lack of take up of the vaccine, there is an interesting emerging picture.

    In older peoples care homes, where vaccination take up is generally significantly higher, responses would suggest that issues around medical reasons and hesitancy are absolutely key for current levels of vaccine take up, although the very practical issue of staff being unavailable when the vaccination team was visiting remains a challenge.
    In services where vaccination is currently much less prevalent it appears there is much more balance across the reasons for not having the vaccine with issues such as lack of access, already having a future booked appointment and hesitancy all playing a relatively equal part.
    The exception to this appears to be care homes for working age adults, where hesitancy appears to be a really dominant reason for lack of vaccination. This would be an area where there needs to be more work to understand the reasons behind this and what support should be offered specifically targeted at this workforce.
    An unexpectedly large category of those who have not yet had the vaccine are those with medical reasons not to have it. This does feel like an area that needs more exploration, as it would appear there are potentially significant numbers of staff unable to receive the vaccination due to medical reasons.”

    Like

  9. Sorry, missed the link

    Some more news from this useful source.

    https://www.nationalcareforum.org.uk/ncf-press-releases/vaccine-take-up-among-social-care-workforce/

    “When examining the reasons for lack of take up of the vaccine, there is an interesting emerging picture.

    In older peoples care homes, where vaccination take up is generally significantly higher, responses would suggest that issues around medical reasons and hesitancy are absolutely key for current levels of vaccine take up, although the very practical issue of staff being unavailable when the vaccination team was visiting remains a challenge.
    In services where vaccination is currently much less prevalent it appears there is much more balance across the reasons for not having the vaccine with issues such as lack of access, already having a future booked appointment and hesitancy all playing a relatively equal part.
    The exception to this appears to be care homes for working age adults, where hesitancy appears to be a really dominant reason for lack of vaccination. This would be an area where there needs to be more work to understand the reasons behind this and what support should be offered specifically targeted at this workforce.
    An unexpectedly large category of those who have not yet had the vaccine are those with medical reasons not to have it. This does feel like an area that needs more exploration, as it would appear there are potentially significant numbers of staff unable to receive the vaccination due to medical reasons.”

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.