1st Covid Jab #ThankyouNHS

Yesterday I had my first Covid jab at our local health centre.

And this morning I’m appalled at the front pages of today’s newspapers.

First, the Covid Jab.

I was called up because I’m on the clinically vulnerable list and have shielded when necessary. I was offered an appointment at one of the mass vaccination centres or advised that I could wait for the GP’s surgery to contact me with an appointment. I chose the latter and went along yesterday afternoon and joined the queue.

What amazingly good organisation and marvelous teamwork by all the NHS staff involved. And taking the challenges of the building to implement a safe one way system to accommodate several patients every few minutes, really worked well.

The jab itself was the Oxford AstraZeneca type and was administered painlessly. I left within about five minutes clutching an information leaflet and a card identifying the batch number of the vaccine for future reference if required.

So far I have no after effects although the info leaflet advised that an aching arm, headache and mild flu-like symptoms were typically experienced.

Most importantly the leaflet made it clear that the vaccine is no cure for Covid.

I quote:

“Like all medicines, no vaccine is completely effective, so you should continue to take recommended precautions to avoid infection.

“Some people may still get Covid despite having a vaccination…

“a full course will reduce your chance of becoming seriously ill.

“WE DO NOT YET KNOW WHETHER IT WILL STOP YOU FROM CATCHING AND PASSING ON THE VIRUS (my capitals) so it’s important to follow the guidance to protect those around you.”

Then the leaflet re-states the SPACE – HANDS – FACE message.

Which brings me to my initial point about the front pages of this morning’s newspapers.

Don’t we ever learn?

The majority of the newspapers are once again cheer leading for the end of lockdown. Just like they did at the end of Lockdown 1. And we all know where that ended up.

All the academics and scientists I’ve seen interviewed on TV are advising a cautious reduction of the safety measures currently in place. Easing one restriction and waiting to see the effect before moving on to another. Just as they advised last summer. And they were ignored and it wasn’t long before we were in Lockdown 2. The effect of the newspapers pressure is to raise hopes and create a false sense of security.

A disgraceful MP was interviewed a couple of nights ago saying we had to learn to live with Covid deaths. They were a fact of life . Get used to it!

Wow! How insensitive was that to the families and friends of the 114 thousand UK citizens who’ve lost their lives as a consequence of Covid. Each of those people was the mum, dad, grandparent, brother, sister, colleague, friend to an inestimable number of others. Yes, people die each year of seasonal flu, cancer and heart disease but that doesn’t mean we like it. We want everything to be done to keep the numbers as low as possible. My parents both died from cancer when they were in their mid-fifties. That was many years ago but I still miss them and mourn their loss almost every day.

This time, as we start to see the benefits of Lockdown 3, the newspapers and other media should adopt an attitude of responsibility and refrain from attempting to pressurize the government into taking unlocking measures too fast. Instead of urging the government to hurtle back to normal, they should use their considerable influence in the court of public opinion to demand the proper support of those whose livelihoods are adversely affected by the pandemic and a calm and measured easing of restrictions. Otherwise the fantastic immunisation roll out won’t have a chance to work to its maximum and we’ll find ourselves trapped in a cycle of never ending lockdowns in perpetuity.

Thanks for reading my blog today and I’m sure you join me in saying over and over again

Thankyou NHS!

Image credit: Image by Klaus Hausmann from Pixabay

By Catherine Murray

I'm trying to write a blogpost every day, hence 3sixtyfive blog.