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Covid: Swiss Health Minister Concerned by Rest Home Staff Vaccine Refusal

In Switzerland, 20% of people over 80 have not been vaccinated against Covid-19 at a time when the fast spreading Delta variant is gaining ground, said Alain Berset, Switzerland’s health minister, in an interview with the NZZ reported RTS.

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Berset said he’s concerned that too many people do not want to get vaccinated. But in rest homes we have a worse problem, he said. A considerable portion of staff working in rest homes or offering home care are refusing to be vaccinated. This is putting old people at risk and should no be allowed, said the minister.

Over the last few months not everything has gone well. Some well organised rest homes have recorded no Covid-19 cases, while in others, close to half of residents have died, he said.

The minister is calling for something to be done. If rest home staff refuse vaccination they should at least be required to take a test once a week, argued the minister. Anything else would be irresponsible.

SSP, a heath sector union, is opposed to rules that would make Covid-19 vaccinations a requirement to work in the sector.

The federal government plans to discuss the situation with rest home management and Spitex, a rest home association. We must avoid a new wave of infections in rest homes at any cost, said Berset.

Overall, the number of daily vaccinations in Switzerland has been falling since around mid-June 2021. By 4 July 2021, 38% of Switzerland’s population was fully vaccinated and 51% fully or partially vaccinated.

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Le News
The newspaper Le News is a free, quality, local English language newspaper launched on 31 October 2013. Le News fills a gap in local Swiss media for the numerous English-speakers living and visiting Switzerland. In late January 2015 we decided to put our print medium on hold and focus on our digital media presence.
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