Getting the vaccine
The coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine is available in England, Scotland and Wales through the NHS.
Employers should support staff in getting the COVID-19 vaccine.
There's currently no law in England, Scotland or Wales that says people must have the vaccine. There may be some people who are advised not to have the vaccine, for example for health reasons.
There's a chance someone might still get or spread COVID-19 if they've had the vaccine. Even once people are vaccinated they should still follow guidelines for:
See government vaccine advice:
- in England – COVID-19 vaccines from the NHS
- in Scotland – COVID-19 vaccines from NHS inform Scotland
- in Wales – COVID-19 vaccination information from Public Health Wales
Vaccinations for care home, health and social care staff in England
On 15 March 2022, the government removed the law on vaccination requirements ('vaccination as a condition of deployment') in:
- CQC-registered care homes in England
- CQC-regulated health and social care workplaces in England
Employers in these workplaces should not use this law as a reason to dismiss staff because they're not fully vaccinated.
If an employer has started a formal dismissal procedure, they should discuss with the employee whether the procedure will continue or not. If the employee has a representative, the employer should include them in any discussions.
If someone has already been dismissed
If an employer has already dismissed someone they do not have to re-employ them. However, it might be helpful to talk to dismissed employees to discuss if there are any options for employing them again.
If someone is re-employed after a break in employment, their length of service usually resets. A break in employment usually happens when someone is not given work for a full calendar week (7 consecutive days from Sunday to the following Saturday). This might have an impact on employment rights such as redundancy pay.
Employers could agree to reinstate an employee's length of service if they start working for them again, but they do not have to. Employees should talk to their employer to find out what will happen to their length of service and to discuss any changes the employer might be able to make.
If you need more advice on the law and how it relates to you, you can: