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Why you must have a COVID-19 vaccine when you are called for it.

This morning we have woken up to some of the best news of 2020. The regulator for medicines, the MHRA, has approved the first COVID-19 vaccination in the UK. This is excellent news and gives us hope for a successful route way out of lockdowns, restrictions, illness and death that has blighted the world this year.

I am dismayed, however to read the doom-mongers and naysayers that are swarming social media like flies in dog muck saying its a hoax, its not tested properly, etc. etc. In a world of fake news, these people are spreading the fakest news of all, like someone does when they stand in that fly ridden dog muck.

While many vaccines take up to ten years to gain approval, they did not have the funding, the resources or the mass testing in the tens of thousands that the vaccines being developed to fight off COVID-19 have had. The MHRA and other regulatory bodies are in place to ensure that the vaccines, as with any other medication, is as safe as it possibly can be. The UK has some of the strictest rules on vaccine testing and regulation of anywhere in the world. It is also done completely independently of politicians.

1.4 million people have died from this horrible virus worldwide. Without these vaccines that number will just go up and up, possibly into the tens of millions.

Vaccines can protect you and those in your community. They can reduce the risk from this virus dramatically. They do not, as some social media posts suggest, contain microchips that monitor your movement. Nor do they contain mercury! They do not weaken your immune system (although the virus itself might).

The NHS website states that "Since vaccines were introduced in the UK, diseases like smallpox, polio and tetanus that used to kill or disable millions of people are either gone or seen very rarely." There is no reason to state this will not be the case for this strain of coronavirus.

The World Health Organization (WHO) recently stated that vaccine hesitancy was one of the top 10 biggest threats to global health. Vaccine hesitancy is where people with access to vaccines delay or refuse vaccination. The world cannot afford for this to happen with COVID-19 vaccines.

The vaccines in the UK will be rolled out, starting next week, following the guidance from the JCVI, which can be found at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/priority-groups-for-coronavirus-covid-19-vaccination-advice-from-the-jcvi-25-september-2020/jcvi-updated-interim-advice-on-priority-groups-for-covid-19-vaccination

When you are called for your vaccine, it is important you go for it, and the follow up jab a few weeks later. These vaccines give us hope for the future. They will save lives, maybe even your life. Together we can do this.