5 TIPS EVERY EMPLOYER SHOULD CONSIDER WHEN IMPLEMENTING A COVID -19 VACCINATION STRATEGY FOR ITS WORKFORCE
As Australia focuses on opening and restrictions ease, employers are looking for advice on how to implement a robust and safe COVID -19 vaccine roll out strategy to ensure the business can operate safely and reduce the risk of COVID -19 for its employees.
Dr Simone Ryan, CEO and Founder of TOTIUM, an organisation that delivers scalable health services and strategies to large Australian businesses to support the health of their employees says that employers should
consider how vaccine strategies are managed and rolled out to build confidence around the vaccine among employees.
To ensure employers are establishing supportive policies and practices, Dr Simone Ryan provides 5 tips to consider when developing a vaccine strategy to help more workers get vaccinated and meet any industry or government mandated requirements.
1 Implement supportive initiatives
Whether vaccination is offered at the workplace or in the community, employers should offer flexible, non-punitive sick leave options, such as paid sick leave, for employees experiencing side effects after vaccination.
Employers should allow time for vaccine confidence to grow – workers who are hesitant at first may become more confident after seeing co-workers get vaccinated.
Employers with an on-site clinic/options should offer more than one opportunity for vaccination. Mobile clinics can return to a worksite multiple times on a rotating schedule.
Employers using community locations can provide supportive policies (such as paid leave and transportation support) for an extended period of time.
2 Provide informative education
Offer all-staff education seminars, such as those run by TOTIUM. After a recent APAC seminar held by Dr Ryan, a large union-driven workforce who were vaccine resistant had an uptake of more than 50 percent of new bookings for COVID-19 vaccines.
Proactively address and reduce the spread and harm of misinformation by sharing credible and accurate information, such as those from Government websites and TOTIUM’s medical seminars.
Share accurate information with staff using multiple communication channels – intranet platforms / seminars / leadership webinars / FAQs / Govt brochures and links.
3 Build confidence in COVID – 19 vaccines
Encourage leaders in the workplace to be vaccine champions and talk with others about COVID-19 vaccines.
Ask organisations and individuals who are respected in employee communities to help build confidence in COVID-19 vaccines.
Host discussions where personnel at different levels can provide input about how to build vaccine confidence.
4 Correctly manage vaccine mandates and proof of vaccination
Whether an employer may require, or mandate COVID-19 vaccination is a matter of state or other applicable law. If an employer requires employees to provide proof that they have received a COVID-19
vaccination from a pharmacy or their own healthcare provider, the employer cannot then mandate that the employee provide any medical information as part of the proof.
Employers must have employee consent to collect this information. Informed, written consent is needed to request relevant medical / health information about an employee, whether it be from them or from someone else.
5 Safety and compliance within the workforce
Using a workforce management platform, such as Ento, to manage vaccine status of employees that are in contact with customers face to face on a daily basis provides reassurance to employers and customers that staff are safe and compliant.
Ento’s Vaxtrack tool helps employers keep on top of vaccine status of new employees and contracted staff, especially those within industries such as aged care, healthcare, childcare where vaccines may be mandatory, and ensures staff are rostered correctly depending on the role and location’s vaccine requirements.
Employers can then securely store vaccine status from employees on the Ento workplace management platform.
Dr Simone Ryan is founder and CEO of TOTIUM, an organisation that delivers scalable health services and strategies to large Australian businesses to support the health of their employees.
For more information, go to: https://totium.net/