Covid-19 vaccinations and healthcare placements

The Government is intending to introduce a mandatory requirement for those working in a healthcare setting to have been vaccinated against Covid-19.  We do not know yet whether it will be introduced, but such a requirement would affect students at the University who are studying courses which involve placements in a healthcare setting.

Please be aware that there are already requirements for those working or deployed in care homes to have been vaccinated from 11 November 2021.

Student nurse with mask on

The proposed new regulations will require workers (including students on placement) who have direct, face-to-face contact with service users such as patients, to provide evidence that they have been fully vaccinated.  There will be very limited exceptions for some individuals and further clarification will be provided by the Government about who the exemptions will apply to in due course. If the new regulations are approved, then it is anticipated that the mandatory vaccination requirement will come into force on 1 April 2022. For care home settings, vaccination against COVID-19 was mandatory from 11 November 2021.

Although limited information is available, we have set out FAQs below to help with some of the queries you may have when you are considering making an application to the University. Updated information will be added here as we receive further clarification from Government.

 
Do I have to have been vaccinated to apply for a healthcare course?

For all of our health and social care courses, completing placements in a health or social care setting is necessary to meet the learning outcomes of the course for students to receive an award and/or register with the relevant regulatory body e.g. Nursing and Midwifery Council, HCPC. From 1 April 2022, if the government proposal is implemented, all students will be required to have received the COVID-19 vaccinations before they are allowed to enter a healthcare setting (either an NHS healthcare setting or another healthcare setting where the mandatory vaccination requirement applies) to undertake a placement, unless an exemption applies. This means that if you are not fully vaccinated by 1 April 2022 (or 11 November 2021 for courses with placements in a care home), you may not be able to complete mandatory placements and are unlikely to be able to continue your studies on a health or social care course at the University.

If you are not yet fully vaccinated and do not intend to be vaccinated by 1 April 2022, you need to be aware that if the mandatory vaccination requirement is introduced and you are unable to meet learning outcomes, you may be withdrawn from the course.

Please note that for courses that involve placements in a care home, then mandatory requirements to be fully vaccinated from 11 November 2021, unless an exemption applies.

 
Do you need me to prove I have been vaccinated?

If the mandatory vaccination requirement is introduced, then you will be required to provide evidence that you have received both COVID-19 vaccinations before you are permitted to undertake a placement in a health or social care setting.

 
When do I need to be vaccinated by?

The Government’s intention is that the mandatory vaccination requirement will be in force from 1 April 2022. This means that before you can start, or continue on a placement in a health or social care setting, you will need to have provided evidence of your COVID-19 vaccination status, unless you are exempt. You will need to have had the first dose no later than the 3 February 2022 to enable you to receive the second dose prior to the 1 April 2022.

Please note that for courses that involve placements in a care home, then mandatory requirements to be fully vaccinated applied from 11 November 2021, unless an exemption applies.

 
What courses require vaccinations?

The mandatory COVID-19 vaccination requirement will apply to all courses where placements in a health or social care setting (either an NHS healthcare setting or another health or social care setting where the mandatory vaccination requirement applies) must be completed for a student to meet learning outcomes and successfully complete the course. We are working to update our course pages to show where the mandatory COVID-19 vaccination requirement may apply. In the meantime, please contact the relevant course tutor to discuss whether a course is likely to be subject to the proposed mandatory vaccination requirement.

We anticipate that vaccinations will be required for the following courses (please note the list below is not exhaustive and is being reviewed and updated in line with Government guidance and regulations):

  • BSc (Hons) Diagnostic Radiography
  • BSc (Hons) Medical Ultrasound
  • BSc (Hons) Midwifery
  • BSc (Hons) Midwifery - NHS
  • BSc (Hons) Midwifery (revalidated course)
  • BSc (Hons) Midwifery (Shortened Programme)
  • BSc (Hons) Midwifery with Foundation Year
  • BSc (Hons) Nursing
  • BSc (Hons) Nursing - Military
  • BSc (Hons) Nursing - Military (Future Nursing)
  • BSc (Hons) Nursing - NHS
  • BSc (Hons) Nursing (Adult) step-on
  • BSc (Hons) Nursing (Child) step-on
  • BSc (Hons) Nursing (Future Nursing)
  • BSc (Hons) Nursing (Learning Disabilities) step-on
  • BSc (Hons) Nursing (Mental Health) step-on
  • BSc (Hons) Nursing with Foundation Year
  • BSc (Hons) Operating Department Practice
  • BSc (Hons) Paramedic Science
  • BSc (Hons) Radiotherapy
  • BSc (Hons) Speech and Language Therapy
  • BSc Speech and Lang Therapy (Part-time)
  • DipHE Operating Department Practice
  • DipHE Paramedic Science
  • FdSc Rehabilitation Worker (Visual Impairment) – non apprenticeship route
  • Graduate Diploma Midwifery (Shortened Programme)
  • MSc Dietetics
  • MSc Nursing (Pre-registration)
  • MSc Physiotherapy
  • MSc Speech and Language Therapy
  • MSci (Nursing) Dual Award
  • MSci Midwifery with Public Health
 
I don’t want the vaccination – can I still apply for a health or social care course?

You can still apply for a health or social care course at the University but if you do not intend to be vaccinated by 1 April 2022 (or 11 November 2021 for courses with care home placements) you may not be able to complete the placements required to meet the learning outcomes (unless you are exempt) and you may be withdrawn from the course. Please think carefully before applying for a health or social care course if you do not want to be vaccinated. We strongly encourage you to consider alternative courses that do not involve placements in a health or social care setting, further information on our range of courses can be found here.

 
Will you give me an offer for a health or social care course if I haven’t been vaccinated?

When you apply to the University we do not ask you to disclose whether or not you have been vaccinated. This means that we will not consider your vaccination status as part of our Admissions processes and it will not affect whether an offer is made to you. However, we encourage you to think carefully before applying, or accepting an offer for a health or social care course if you do not intend to be vaccinated by 1 April 2022. If you are not fully vaccinated and the mandatory vaccination requirement is introduced (and you are not exempt), you may not be able to undertake the placements required to meet the learning outcomes and you may be withdrawn from the course. In these circumstances, your liability to pay tuition fees will be calculated in accordance with the University’s Tuition Fees Policy.

 
Will Foundation course students be affected?

Yes, potentially. Any foundation year student looking to progress onto an undergraduate course affected by these changes will also need to comply with the vaccination requirements (unless you are exempt).

 
Will students already studying at the University be affected by the changes?

Yes. Existing students on health and social care courses are likely to affected by the changes, depending on what course they are on and what placements they have left to complete.

If students are yet to complete mandatory placements, then they will need to be fully vaccinated (as set out above) to complete the placements and meet the learning objectives. All students on health and social care courses will need to complete some placements in a 'face-to-face / hands on' healthcare setting.

For students that have completed some placements, there may be the option to complete remaining placements remotely, but this would depend on the course and nature of the remaining practice outcomes. Students should speak to their course leader for further information.

Where existing students do not wish to be vaccinated and have successfully completed all theory assessments but are unable to complete mandatory placements (for example if a remote placement is not possible), it may, depending on the course and relevant learning objectives being met, be possible for them to be awarded a BSc (Hons) Studies in Healthcare. However, this would not confer eligibility to apply for registration and they would not therefore be able to practice or use a protected title after graduation.

Getting your Covid-19 vaccination

If you have not already been vaccinated there are a number of ways to arrange a Covid-19 vaccination:.

Booked appointments

You can book a 1st, 2nd, 3rd or booster dose of the Covid-19 vaccine or manage an appointment online. You need to be registered with a GP surgery in England to book an appointment.

Book an appointment

Walk-in appointments

You can get a dose of the COVID-19 vaccine from a walk-in site without an appointment. You DO NOT need to be registered with a GP surgery in England for a walk-in appointment.

Find a walk-in centre