Medical students may be enlisted for vaccine rush

A medical expert advising the government on its coronavirus strategy said on Sunday that officials are in talks with universities about letting medical students work at vaccination centres to tackle a shortage of staff and boost vaccine take-up.

Professor Gabriel Leung, who’s also the dean of the University of Hong Kong’s medical school, said the city’s vaccination capacity has fallen far short now the demand for jabs has risen.

He said the government has asked him if medical students could be trained to vaccinate people.

“We are definitely willing to cooperate. We have to work out the details of the plan such as insurance matters, how to avoid affecting their studies and which vaccination centres they should work at,” he said.

Leung also urged the government to boost the vaccine take-up among elderly people.

He said authorities should give Covid jabs to all residents at elderly care homes, unless they decide to opt out.

He said such a system, which is already in place for flu vaccinations, could boost the inoculation rate to 95 percent.