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Record ethnicity of those getting covid vaccine to fight stigma, NHSE told


NHS England has been urged to introduce routine recording of race and ethnicity data when people are given their covid vaccination.

Documents seen by HSJ show Pinnacle, the IT system being used by GPs and mass vaccination centres to record jabs, does not directly require ethnicity to be recorded.

Jabeer Butt, chief executive of the Race Equality Foundation, which promotes race equality in public services, told HSJ that making it a requirement would help establish the facts on uptake among different groups, more quickly.

It is understood the NHS is able to ascertain data on vaccine uptake by ethnicity by connecting it with GP records, through the national immunisation management service, and potentially with other healthcare data. However, Mr Butt said this would provide only limited insight and take more time.

He believes the absence of data may allow ”misconceptions” to take hold about lower uptake among some minorities, which can lead to stigma, when in fact, he said, the trend may so far simply be due to there being fewer black and Asian people in the oldest age groups, who are the first eligible for vaccination. 

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Source: HSJ, 24 January 2021

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