GDC comments on first results from UK-REACH study relating to Covid-19 and healthcare workers


  Posted by: Dental Design      29th April 2021

Responding to the publication of the first results from the UK-REACH study, which found Covid-19 vaccine hesitancy in 23% of healthcare workers, General Dental Council Executive Director, Strategy, Stefan Czerniawski, said:

“We encourage all dental professionals to be vaccinated as an important step in protecting their patients, their communities – and of course – themselves. This research shows that most healthcare workers – including dental professionals – recognise that vaccines are safe and effective, but that a minority remain hesitant. It’s important to understand the reasons for that so that concerns can be addressed, and take-up encouraged.”

The United Kingdom Research study into Ethnicity And Covid-19 outcomes in Healthcare workers (UK-REACH) study is the largest and most comprehensive research project assessing the risk of Covid-19 for 18,000 clinical and non-clinical staff. It was launched after growing evidence showed how people from ethnic minority backgrounds had double the risk of severe Covid-19 infection compared to that of the White population.

The research is jointly funded by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR), and supported by the NIHR Leicester Biomedical Research Centre – a partnership between Leicester’s Hospitals, the University of Leicester and Loughborough University.

The study is supported by the major national professional regulatory bodies, including the General Medical Council (GMC), Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC), General Dental Council (GDC), General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC), Pharmaceutical Society of Northern Ireland (PSNI), Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and General Optical Council (GOC).

Czerniawski added: “We have recently updated our vaccination guidance for dental professionals and employers which we encourage everyone working in dentistry to read. We will continue to seek opportunities to promote as wide a vaccination take-up as possible and to support the important work of the UK-REACH study.”


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