Company ‘attempts to skip coronavirus vaccine queue’ with £5,000-per-jab offer for staff
A company has tried to get its employees the coronavirus vaccine ahead of schedule (Image: Getty Images)
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Employees of a luxury property company were in line to jump the coronavirus vaccine queue thanks to the offer of a hefty charity donation.
Several GP surgeries received letters from the Hacking Trust, a London property investment company, offering £5,000 for any leftover Covid vaccines.
The jabs would be used by the firm's members of staff, the Bristol Post reported.
The practice manager of a doctors surgery in Bristol went on Twitter to blast the request, which offered to make a £5,000 donation to a charity of her choice, "or to any named individual".
Robyn Clark, who works at Kingswood Health Centre, accused the firm of trying to take "vaccines from the vulnerable" in now deleted tweets.
"As if I'm not going to call every eligible patient I can find, followed by healthcare staff in my patch, followed by other high risk patients before a company involved in property purchases and corporate acquisitions based in London," she wrote.
The letter was sent to several GP practices
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"I mean really?!" she added.
Due to logistical issues with storing the Pfizer vaccine, which must be kept at -70C, some NHS staff have received notifications of spare jabs they can take at the end of shifts.
The Hacking Trust confirmed it had made the offer, but said it had been misinterpreted.
"The Hacking Health Trust has offered, in open correspondence to some GPs, charitable donations to staff or surgeries in this difficult time for any vaccines which were unused," a spokesperson said.
"We had heard that some vaccines were being unused due to missed appointments.
"We would apologise that our good intentions have been misinterpreted."
The Hacking Health Trust is a division of the company which buys "commercial medical properties".
The Institute of General Practice Managers, a nationwide industry body which Ms Clarke is a founding member of, slammed the offer.
"The IGPM are appalled that a company would offer money in any capacity to effectively jump the queue for a vaccine," a statement from the organisation read.
The company offered to donate money for the jab
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"Practices are doing their utmost to ensure vaccine is given to the priority groups as laid out by the JCVI, as these are the most vulnerable in our society.
"The NHS is free and equitable to patients, always will be."
The attempt to secure vaccines has enraged many who are set to wait months for the jab amid a pandemic that reached record deadly highs on Friday.
One man wrote on Twitter: "So #hackingtrust exactly what makes your staff more valuable than everyone else?"
Throughout the pandemic rich and famous people from across the globe have been caught making the most of certain advantages.
British celebs including Molly-Mae Hague and Tommy Fury were criticised this week for heading to Dubai for a spot of sun amid the pandemic.
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In spring last year it was reported that ultra-rich residents of the Hamptons in the US were having personal ICU units built in their basements.
In California the medical board issued a warning to doctors that if they ignored the state’s prioritisation guidelines and let private patients skip the vaccine queue, they could have their licenses revoked.
Back in March Idris Elba came under scrutiny when he revealed he had tested positive, despite a shortage of test kits at the time.
Russian President Valdimir Putin is said to be keeping himself safe by require anyone who meets him to quarantine for two weeks beforehand, and then produce a negative test.