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Healthcare Policy Assignment: Analysis Of COVID-19 Mandatory Vaccination Policy


Task: Write a detailed report on healthcare policy assignment on the title below: Select a healthcare policy from your own healthcare system and critically appraise the development and implementation of this policy from the healthcare provider and the user perspective.


Introduction to the context of healthcare policy assignment
Usually, the healthcare system remains quite busy and dynamic in its action. Unfortunately, the dynamicity was disrupted due to the COVID 19 pandemic. For controlling the spread of pandemic further the healthcare system has been hugely supported by the government in which a number of regulations and policies were implemented within the healthcare system. This assignment is going to analyze the fruitfulness of such a system which is currently in place in light of the COVID 19 pandemic. For this assignment, the policy that has been chosen is the COVID 19 mandatory vaccination policy. This policy has been quite highly active because this provides the rules and ways for conducting the procedure of Vaccination throughout Canada. As per the data gathered from various reviewed sources about the COVID 19 vaccination policy, it is quite evident that the main purpose of this policy is to maintain a healthy and safe workplace culture that can limit the COVID 19 pandemic and can also keep the everyday work of the people continued. This is why the policy is more focused on vaccinating the workers, staff, student placements, volunteers or any third-party contractor. All these people are highly needed in useful places of maintaining order in the workplaces and so ensuring health safety for these identified groups of people have been found to be highly necessary. Through the help of this assignment, a detailed critical analysis of the implementation and the efficiency of the policy will be conducted. The political and social considerations of Canada that are associated with this policy will be useful for understanding how the public of the country are responding towards the actions of the policy in such an adverse ongoing pandemic situation.

Basics of the Policy
The COVID 19 Vaccination Policy is one of the most important policies that have been implemented by various governments in different countries. As per the scope of this research assignment the conditions and the scenario of Canada have been considered so that the importance and the basics of this policy can be made much clearer because of the consideration of a limited group of people. So as per the policy that is implemented in Canada, all the existing staff, support workers, third party contractors, volunteers, student placements, youth group department, people associated with human resource services and any designated business unit will be receiving the primary importance while conducted the mass vaccination procedure(McAlister et al., 2021). This policy has been made effective until January 28, 2022, unless the Government wants t to extend it further. The COVID 19 Vaccination policy includes proof and record for ensuring how the vaccination procedure in the country has been conducted and what are the total number of people and which groups have been completely vaccinated as per the guidelines approved by Health Canada for COVID 19 vaccination procedures. As per the updated records, this has been also included that are the percentage of people who have already received or are currently eligible for taking the third dose of the vaccines(McAlister et al., 2021). For this, written proof of the medical contraindication is needed to be provided with the proper reason behind every act. The policy has also provided a guideline for the vaccine providers about some of the medical exemptions for the particular COVID 19 vaccines. Firstly, this has been stated that for any person who is having some allergic reactions in response to the vaccine then the person should be directed towards an immunologist or allergist as soon as possible. Secondly, this has also been stated in the policy that any person who has already suffered from diseases like pericarditis and myocarditis after they have received the first dose of the vaccine should be marked for ensuring their safety issues during the administration of the second dose(Saich&Martiniuk, 2021). Thirdly the same method of immunization is to be followed for any person who had suffered through complex adversities. As per the rules of this policy, if the time of effectiveness of the medical contraindication has already been expired then it is necessary to provide the vaccination proof by ensuring all the stated factors within at least 30 days of the expiration of the medical contraindication. A point of consideration for the various agencies of support workers and third party contractors have been provided in accordance with which they have been provided with the job for ensuring that all their personnel have been vaccinated properly and fully along with conducting the process of gathering proofs in support of the COVID 19 vaccination process(Saich&Martiniuk, 2021).

According to the privacy concern for this policy, while gathering the vaccination reports or other personal medical information of the people the respective organizations or institutions should align with a few of the regulations for respecting the legal considerations of this policy(MacDonald et al., 2021). For collecting the personal data of people, it is necessary to conduct a process of direct collection without using any public servant or non-provincial bodies to play the role of distributer across the country(MacDonald et al., 2021). The validity and critical analysis of each of the activities and functions should be maintained that are conducted by the organization or the institutions for implementing the policy. This personal information that is being gathered by the organization can be retained at a maximum of two years from the last time the information was used for the purpose of maintaining the administration of the organization in response to the COVID 19 vaccination process.

Social and Political considerations of the policy
During the active mass vaccination process in Canada accordingly, with the COVID 19 vaccination policy, this has been observed that various social groups have shown different attitudes and behaviours which is completely based on the factor of demographics and the vulnerabilities associated with the health risks in response to the vaccines. A number of surveys have been conducted throughout the time period and this has been observed that there are some similar patterns for hesitating or opposing the vaccination procedure. A unique trend and difference have been drawn in accordance with the data collected by the surveys in which they divided the public into two groups(Hensel et al., 2020). One group of people are those who have responded to the compulsory vaccination procedure and have taken vaccines from places of their choice and the other group of people are those who chose to avail themselves of the free of charge vaccines. In both of these groups people with both mindsets of hesitation and acceptance have been found(Hensel et al., 2020). This mindset has been highly varying within different cultures and demography within Canada. People with an age above 65 have been observed to be more accepting and willing for taking the vaccine. Similarly, males are more accepting of the idea of compulsory vaccination(Piché-Renaud et al., 2021). Among the students, this data was not applicable because of a lack of understanding or an even better understanding of the vaccines. People having an existing complex health condition was found to be more willing for taking the vaccine. From another angle, if we look then at the public group who lack a proper sense about the community, people who believe in various conspiracy theories and people who are the supporters of various political groups are not much willing for taking this COVID 19 vaccines(Piché-Renaud et al., 2021). These are the people who have been proved themselves as the biggest opposition to this vaccination process. This has been observed that the politicization of this vaccination policy has become a big problem that is encouraging skeptical thoughts and ideas about the free of charge vaccination initiatives(Bacon et al., 2021). In response to all these considerations, the political parties have developed their own political agendas of whether the vaccines are safe or not. This is exactly where the policymakers develop difficulties and dilemmas while developing or updating the COVID 19 vaccination policy where few of the political and social considerations are the biggest obstruction to the vaccination process(Bacon et al., 2021).

Implementation of the Policy
This section is intended for providing the implementation procedure of the COVID 19 Vaccination Policy in Canada in response to the COVID pandemic. Last year the people of Canada have already experienced the fourth wave of the pandemic and during that time the hospitals and the health care facilities suffered a lot because of the presence of a large population of unvaccinated people which resulted in a much faster spread of the disease(Migone, 2020). Thus, a precautionary policy was developed for initiating a proper framework for conducting the vaccination processes in the whole country. Initial necessity before implementing this policy nationwide it was necessary to develop a strong infrastructure for promoting the vaccine administrations to the public. As a result of this, the Public Health Agency of Canada along with the help from the federal public services conducted an up gradation in their program for departmental hazard program(Migone, 2020). This program up-gradation includes the adoption of an application control measure process along with infection prevention processes. For making the up-gradation in these, the guidelines from the Public Service Occupational Health Program of Canada have been followed perfectly(MacDonald, Harmon & Graham, 2021). These guidelines helped the government to focus mainly on administrative measures and the preventive practices that should be maintained on staggered work shifts, remote working environments and maintaining these measures until further advice is provided. In order to properly facilitate the policy implementation, a timeline has been developed for scheduling each of the works(MacDonald, Harmon & Graham, 2021). The process of COVID 19 Vaccination Policy implementation began during the month of October in 2021 during the middle of the fourth wave of the pandemic in Canada. Throughout this month the Government of Canada focused on launching the Vaccine Attestation Tracking System which is also known as GC-VATS in the whole country. The employees were asked for entering their vaccine attestation status in accordance with the GC-VATS(Ogilvie et al., 2021). To complete the employee vaccination status entry, process the deadline was provided as the last date of the month of October. The employees who were not able to enter their vaccination status were asked to accommodate a request within the deadline day. In the meantime, the various managers of different departments were asked for accumulating suitable data for developing a decision on this employee vaccine status as soon as possible(Ogilvie et al., 2021). After completing this whole process, the employees were then provided with access into the workplaces in accordance with the respective departmental regulations and processes which includes the correct measures that were needed to be maintained for preventing the pandemic(Betti et al., 2021). The implementation procedure of the policy has also considered some of the special situations that might arise during the compliance of the policy. After October focus was given on those employees who did not yet get any of the vaccine doses and nether have attested their vaccination status as asked for. As per the guidelines of the Government of Canada, the organizations were asked for arranging a training session, especially for the unvaccinated employees. In this context, it is the role of the manager to help their employees understand the consequences of not attesting to their status of vaccination so that they can develop an idea about how serious the situation really is(Vilches et al., 2021). Following this process of ensuring vaccination attestation of all the employees in all the organizations of the country the full implementation of this policy was hoped to be completed within the month of November. For this to be done effectively the policymakers decided to name those employees who haven't taken the vaccine yet as "Unwilling"(Vilches et al., 2021). These unwilling employees were the ones from where the implementation of the measures in accordance with the policy began. Conducting proper mandatory tests by the respective organization on those employees were asked to be done and a report of the results must be provided to the Public Health Agency of Canada(Vilches et al., 2021). After the mandatory testing procedures, these employees must be sent on administrative leave without providing them with proper payments on the grounds of failing to take the vaccine and not providing their attested status of the vaccination. On the other hand, the employees who have already provided their first dose status report of the vaccination were provided with a total 10-week period for again presenting their status report for vaccination once they have taken the second dose(Betti et al., 2021). The managers need to inspect who have not taken the second dose within this period of time and as a result, they will be sent for administrative leave without any payments for their services.

The policymakers have ensured to include a few of the compulsory points which should be followed before implementing the policy. According to these points for implementation of the policy, it was stated that the organizations will fully have the provision for arranging and requesting for a schedule as per their choice so that the employees who could not take vaccines because of lack of time from their work can take them by getting a flexible appointment(Betti et al., 2021). Sick leave should be provided to the employees on the basis of the collective agreement in which several employment terms and considerations are needed to be accepted by the employees(Ogilvie et al., 2021). Other than this, Global Affairs Canada has also included some of the responsibilities within the policy for those employees of the country who works abroad. According to this responsibility, they have been asked for taking only the vaccine that has been approved by the Public Health Agency of Canada. In case they are unable to get the Canadian approved vaccine, they should consult the human resource division on providing sufficient helps to them in such situations. Finally, the process for ensuring that all of the measures are getting implemented properly as per the policy rules are needed to be conducted and for this, the deputy heads should take extra responsibility(Nasreen et al., 2021). This will be the role of deputy's heads in the policy implementation for ensuring that all of the regulations and information about their rights and accommodations during the pandemic situation are informed to them properly as per the guidelines of the Canadian Human Rights Act. Along with this further help and support that are needed should be readily provided to the employees(Nasreen et al., 2021). The managers should also be informed completely about their actions and how they should take extra initiative for ensuring that the policy is getting maintained properly within the workplace. An informed decision is needed to be taken by the managers for ensuring that their employees are getting the proper opportunities for the vaccination procedure at the earliest. If needed the managers are also needed to seek expert guidance from the internal subject consultants of the organization for ensuring whether the policy is needed to be aligned with any of the organizational implications such as in their financial, security or technological field(Ogilvie et al., 2021). With proper consultancy and guidance, they are allowed to make certain changes as per the need by keeping the overall framework of the policy the same.

Involvement of the public and their response towards the implementation of this policy
Right now, a lot of COVID 19 vaccines are there which are much capable of providing people with a certain level of protection against the virus. For providing the vaccines to the people the policies that are getting developed are quite strict and which has been highly accepted by the people and also has resulted in the development of lots of questions from the side of the people in the whole world(Ismail et al., 2020). In the case of Canada, the scenario of acceptance of this COVID 19 vaccination policy has not been taken in a positive way by a few groups of people. The compulsory nature of the vaccines was the main point of concern for the public in regards to this policy but the Government was made strict in this aspect by the public themselves(Ismail et al., 2020). This is because initially the choice of taking vaccinations was provided to the public themselves but unfortunately a number of social and political considerations have resulted in an inefficient vaccination process which resulted in the fourth wave of the pandemic. In this policy, no vaccine no payment rules have developed a huge level of concerns among the unwilling group of people. On the other hand, some people have accepted the policy quite positively(Top et al., 2020). These people have already received their full vaccination doses and are now quite confident for performing in their respective fields of work. The policy includes some good implications due to which many people thought to be a very useful one for again initiating physical activities. As described earlier massive political objections have been developed in light of this policy but with time it is looking like slowly everyone is getting involved with the idea of taking the COVID 19 vaccine in accordance with the policy(Harrison & Wu, 2020). In the last few months, this has been observed that the specific group of people who were entitled under this policy has cooperated a lot for which the country is very close to gaining success in the process of mass vaccination(Harrison & Wu, 2020). This has been observed that the intensity of aligning with the policy for the employees and staffs and other important workers in different fields have increased hugely. Initially, there was very fewer organizations and institutions who were accepting this policy because of the resistance from the employees and the workers but now with time, the organizations have also realized how important the policy is for maintaining a safe work culture. This is why the unwilling employees and workers were forced to adjust to the regulations of the policy. The policy in its early days was maintained by some of the employees but with time this population has started to align with the policy effectively. Right now, the percentage of the public accepting the policy is more than the people who do not want to align with this policy(Bell, Romero & Lee, 2020). The main reason which has triggered the mass acceptance for this policy is that the people have started to get accustomed to the new normal scenario and so for gaining access into their they have no other option. It is an advantage to the government that bringing the people in same terms with the vaccine as this helped in again resuming the physical work culture in Canada which was getting lost. It is believed that with time people themselves took the initiative for educating themselves about the COVID vaccines and with proper guidance and help from the organization’s training programs and the Government regulations the implementation of this kind of strict policy has been made possible(Piraveenan et al., 2021). Thus, this can be proved from observing how people are getting adapted to the policy that this has a direct impact on the socio-political influences which was driving the people before. This is also because of the employees, staff and workers that the policy was turned into a successful one. This has not only rendered the workplace safe but has also helped the country to bring their COVID scenario into their control for the time being(Piraveenan et al., 2021). So, as far as the intentions of the people played an important role in this context of COVID 19 vaccination policies of Canada the cooperation of the people has been proved to be a vital one for developing mass acceptance for the policy(Top et al., 2020).

Importance of the policy
In recent times the main focus of concern for any government in the world is to ensure that their people are getting the vaccines for COVID 19 in an efficient way. For developing a way for vaccinating the huge population of people various countries are taking various approaches in regards to the guidelines and safety measures for COVID 19 provided by WHO(Paltiel et al., 2021). This is why policies like this are very important to develop. The Canadian Government in the last three to four months has received a lot of positivity after the implementation of the policy. Moreover, by enforcing such compulsory vaccination policies in various workplaces and in the lives of people of different communities and cultural backgrounds, the risk of people getting affected by COVID 19 have been reduced in the country. The policies have also been very helpful for informing the people about the need for the COVID 19 vaccines by generating mass awareness about the criticality of the situation. After the introduction of this policy, the negative mindset of the people about these vaccines have been changed but still few groups of people are there who are still very much stubborn to not take the vaccines. As per the recent surveys conducting early 2022, this was observed that the percentage of people who are considering the COVID vaccines as important has increased than the data that was gathered before the implementation of the policy(Paltiel et al., 2021). The good thing that developed with the help of this policy is that people were not left with any other option than to take up the vaccines. Whether the downfall of the active COVID cases in Canada from the fourth wave was a result of this vaccination policy or not is a very huge subject to debate. The change that the policy brought is in the mindset of the people that is for sure. To date with the help of this policy, as per the data of the Government of Canada, the maximum amount of the population has been successfully administered with the first dose of the COVID vaccines and about half of the population has been administered with the full vaccination file(Verger et al., 2021). Now the same policy is being decided to be implemented for administering the booster dose which has been specified by WHO as necessary. Thus, the COVID 19 Vaccination Policy has provided a strong way for the Government for reaching each of the individual people who are associated with important works in their daily lives and provide them with the vaccine. In Canada the vaccination procedure has already put the people in a zone out of the potential risk from COVID but still some risks will always be remaining because of the nature of the virus(Rutten et al., 2021). Nowadays in Canada people have accepted vaccines as the safest way for developing protection against the COVID 19 pandemic and this thought is believed to be a result of the implementation of the policy in various workplaces for ensuring that the staff, employees, workers, and other people associated with various businesses and human resource services lead a safe work culture during the times of pandemic(Rutten et al., 2021).

In the current state in which the world is right now healthcare policies normally is needed to be very strong for binding the people into the same framework for ensuring their own health safety. The pressure that comes on the healthcare industry is immense and policies like this are highly important for conducting each of the operations of the health system in a safe and ethical way. There are various legal health policies within a single country which is mandatory to be followed by the people helps in bringing high efficiency and effectiveness in the treatments that are provided to the people of various positions and status in the society. This in turn helps in improving the overall health industry within a country which is considered as the most important sector of industry among all.

This research assignment considered the COVID scenario for explaining the use of policy in recent times. After completing this whole qualitative research by taking into consideration various secondary data more strong policies are needed to be implemented for controlling the spread of COVID. The better and strengthen the policy will be the more efficient the Governments will be able to bring in their force for fighting the pandemic. Thus, further research in this field of study is hugely needed so that the scope of the existing COVID 19 policies can be improved and expanded along with implementations of other major policies for covering the loopholes in the health sector which COVID 19 is exploiting time and time again. Although the research has been conducted from a Canadian perspective the issue is the same in the whole world and so the measures for implementing and improving policies like the COVID 19 Vaccination Policy of Canada throughout the world is the necessity in today's point of time.

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