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Vaccine Progress, Approval, and Deployment

Bantamzen

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It appears to be based a risk vs reward approach rather than a particular age group being more susceptible to developing blood clots. Or in other words, under 30s are in so little danger from covid it's not worth taking any risk when it comes to the AZ vaccine. That's my understanding anyway.
Yeah it seems that age isn't a factor for risk of clotting, so its really down risk of clotting versus risk of covid. Either way the jobs covered so it can't be used as an excuse to slow relaxing the restrictions.
 
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Ediswan

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Yeah it seems that age isn't a factor for risk of clotting, so its really down risk of clotting versus risk of covid. Either way the jobs covered so it can't be used as an excuse to slow relaxing the restrictions.
Keep an eye open for latest blobby graphics (I can't link to a TV screen). Age does appear to be factor for clotting, but it is indeed the greatly increased risk of serious covid with age that makes the difference.
 

nlogax

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Confirmed; this change won't affect the anticipated vaccination schedule. Therefore I assume it won't affect the schedule to unlock the country and get our lives back.
 

DustyBin

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Yeah it seems that age isn't a factor for risk of clotting, so its really down risk of clotting versus risk of covid. Either way the jobs covered so it can't be used as an excuse to slow relaxing the restrictions.

JVT has just confirmed that the overall vaccine programme shouldn't be affected, or at worst any delay will be negligible. That's good news at least!
 

duncanp

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JVT has just confirmed that the overall vaccine programme shouldn't be affected, or at worst any delay will be negligible. That's good news at least!

And some young people are going to be offered the single shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine when it becomes available in June or July.

It could result in younger people being fully vaccinated before older people, and this is good news, as it will mean that more people will be fully vaccinated sooner.

This is a vindication of the (UK) government's strategy of ordering doses of several different vaccines.

At any rate, it means that today's news about the Astra Zeneca vaccine should not affect the overall progress of the vaccine rollout, and consequently the lifting of lockdown.

But no doubt the COVID bedwetters will be going into scaremongering overdrive trying to convince us otherwise.


A new single shot Covid-19 vaccine could be available by July and will be mainly used to target young millennials who might not want to wait for three months for a second dose.

Nadhim Zahawi, the vaccines minister, said UK medical regulators are now formally assessing the safety of the Janssen vaccine, which is made by Johnson & Johnson.

Ministers are hoping the Janssen jab can be deployed among the young adults born around turn of the century as a ‘jab and go’ offering.

Anyone receiving the AstraZeneca vaccine, seen as the workhorse of the Government’s vaccination roll-out, has to have two jabs, 12 weeks apart, before being fully inoculated.

The hope is that the Janssen jab will be attractive to young people who will be desperate to start enjoying a summer by the time the vaccine roll-out reaches them.

Government sources said the first Janssen jabs will be in people’s arms by July at the earliest, around the time the youngest adults will be receiving their first jabs.

The UK Government has ordered 30 million doses of the Janssen jab which uses the same type of technology as AstraZeneca’s vaccine.

One source said: “Where it will be useful is it could work really well for the younger cohort - the 18 to 29 year olds. One hit and you are done - and you are off to Ibiza.”

Pressed last week by Steve Baker MP in the Commons, Mr Zahawi told MPs: “Reviews are underway by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) to assess the Johnson & Johnson (known as Janssen in Europe) and Novavax vaccines.

“Any vaccines that are made available will have been authorised because they pass the MHRA’s tests on safety and efficacy.

“If, and when, those vaccines are authorised by the MHRA, we expect to receive the doses for both vaccines in the second half of this year.”

The Janssen jab was approved in the US in February and the EU in March after trials found it was 67 per cent effective at preventing Covid-19 and completely effective at preventing hospital admissions and death from the virus.

The MHRA and Johnson & Johnson were approached late last week for comment by The Telegraph.

Pressed about the progress of approving the Janssen jab two weeks ago, June Raine told The Telegraph: “As stated by Janssen, we are working with them to complete the rolling review process.”

“We’re not able to comment further due to commercial confidentiality.”

Two Covid-19 vaccines are currently being administered in the UK - but there are several more that have been ordered and are yet to be approved.

The Pfizer-BioNTech jab was approved on Dec 8 while the Oxford-AstraZeneca jab was approved on Dec 30.

The Moderna vaccine was approved on Jan 7 and is expected to be rolled out this month.

The Novavax vaccine is awaiting imminent approval from the MHRA.

A Department of Health and Social Care spokesman said: “The UK’s vaccination rollout continues at pace, with over 35 million jabs administered so far.

“We are on track to offer a first dose to everyone in the priority groups 1-9 by mid-April and all adults by the end of July. Thanks to the swift and decisive work of our Vaccine Taskforce, the UK moved quickly to secure 30 million doses of Janssen’s vaccine last summer.”

A source added: "We cannot provide details on vaccines which have not yet been authorised by the MHRA.

"We have set out our timelines for the vaccination programme and there is no change to this. We intend to offer a first dose to all over-50s by mid-April and all adults by the end of July.

"Vaccines are being distributed fairly across the UK to make sure the most vulnerable people in society are immunised first. Some parts of the country have made very significant progress and have gone slightly faster than the average. We’re putting more supply into areas that have more to do and the rollout of vaccinations will continue to expand at pace.

"Through the government’s Vaccines Taskforce, the UK has secured early access to 457 million doses of seven of the most promising vaccine candidates."
 
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As happens with many viruses


This happens with influenza, but once the vast majority of people have built up immunity, the numbers are likely to be small. You can't keep people alive forever and if we eliminated all seasonal respiraory viruses it would not keep elderly people alive indefinitely.


There is no evidence of this. Unlike influenza, Sars-CoV-2 has built-in "copy protection" which dramatically reduces the chances of mutations. There is only one strain of Sars-CoV-2 and there is no evidence that any alternative strains will emerge as mutations from this virus.

Note that when you talk about "vaccine resistant", this is such a generic term it is effectively meaningless. What do you actually mean by this? If you refer to a new variant being able to evade some of the antibody response, we know this can happen but it's not a big deal. There is no evidence that the T-cell response can be evaded by any variant.

I believe you are misleading people by spreading fear, uncertainty and doubt regarding vaccines. I have previously explained to you why you are wrong.

Anyone who chooses to drive a car is putting peoples lives at risk; I could go on for ages with many other examples. If you want to stick to viruses, then the same applies with influenza. I do not see how such hyperbolic language is in any way helpful or proportionate.

There are multiple strains of SARS_CoV_2 - the Kent strain, the South African strain, the Brazilian strain etc. A strain is a variant where the behaviour is altered - the Kent variant is more contagious, hence is a strain. The South African one has some ability to evade the immune response therefore a strain.

The recent Pfizer study showed that in the over 80s only 68% had a detectable T-cell response, however they are claiming a 100% efficacy againt the SA strain due to the incredibly high antibody response created by their vaccine.

A significant proportion of the world’s population is due to vaccinated with the chinese vaccines which are deactivated virus vaccines - like the flu jab. These tend to elicit little or no T-cell responses so there is still a genuine possibility that many could become gravely ill after being vaccinated.
 

LAX54

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scanning the internet for something else, came over a few articles reporting that the Pfizer vaccine has had issues with bad side effects in other countries, yet seems to go unreported ?
(edit, seems it was some (23) elderly people who died after having the jab in Norway {from theBMJ} )
 
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MikeWM

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I’ve noticed that there’s quite an anti-vaccine (or anti-‘medical intervention’) theme running through various threads.

I'm not sure I'd agree - I'd guess that the number of people here that have explicitly said they won't have a Covid vaccine (or at least won't any time soon, which is what I've said) is still in single figures.

There's some more who voted for one or other of the 'no' options in the poll thread, but even so we're clearly in a fairly small minority.

I don't think I've seen anyone try to say others shouldn't have a vaccine if they want to. (Unlike the bloke I saw outside Brixton underground station last week, who was performing some sort of rap which consisted of repeatedly saying/singing 'don't take the vaccine'!)
 

sjpowermac

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I'm hearing it right, left and centre that people who don't want to take the vaccine are "selfish" (or worse!), and I'm sick of hearing it.
Is that people in real life who are saying that or online? Either way, I can understand why that would be annoying.
 

Yew

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Because evidence supports that the vaccine reduces the chances of people spreading the virus and for people unable to have the jab, this provides more safety.

As it will take a while to carry out this testing phase, it is worth them kicking this off now and in a few months with some data, SAGA can make a decision if needed on whether to roll this out.
But does it show that such a minor second order effect is worth the massive harms of lockdowns and restrictions? There are no other respiratory illnesses that we engage in general vaccination with, and the case is yet to be made as to why we should treat COVID differently in terms of vaccination strategy.
 

yorkie

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Do you still encourage all who can to take the vaccine?
I would do, yes.

I’ve noticed that there’s quite an anti-vaccine (or anti-‘medical intervention’) theme running through various threads.
Not so much on this forum; we've had a poll in which 83% are completely happy, and only 3.6% absolutely wouldn't. That leaves 13.4% needing a bit of encouragement.

This is probably not unrepresentative of the UK population as a whole really.

I've not seen much of an anti-vax theme but there have been examples of vaccine hesitancy. I will try to explain to people that the risks of not taking the vaccine outweigh the risks of taking it; not just in respect of potential for harm to the individual but also for the wider good of society too.


I do understand the caution expressed by some, and wondered what your stance is?

To be clear, I fully support that everyone should have a choice to take the vaccine or not, and I’m completely opposed to the vaccine passports.
My stance is very much that it should be encouraged but not forced. I'll resist commenting on vaccine passports here as it's covered in another thread and I've posted a bit there.

My understanding of the blood clotting is that it's mostly younger women who are getting these unusual blood clots, though the gender link doesn't appear to be being given much publicity. However other forms of medication can also cause these unusual blood clots, so this is not without precedent.

There is some confusion over whether 'aspiration' is required ( see https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/hcp/acip-recs/general-recs/administration.html or https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5333604/ for more on this); Denmark for example have changed their practice in this regard so it will be interesting to see if this reduces the likelihood of such blood clots in Denmark.

I have a feeling that vaccine uptake in the under-30s is the government's lowest priority anyway, because younger people are far more likely to have antibodies from previous illness/exposure than any other age group. Therefore they can safely say "Wait for a Moderna / Pfizer / Novavax / J&J" without it having a major impact on the overall plan.

If I'm not totally wrong, I believe the last antibody study showed something like 40% of young people tested had antibodies, and the vast majority of those were from previous infection.
They are, but my understanding is that T cell immunity is more important and that the vaccine induces a stronger response in many people compared to those who had the natural infection.

Also bear in mind that being infected once with the virus may be seen as similar to being vaccinated once (actually it's nowhere near as simplistic as that as it will vary massively from person to person) and we could do with a booster.

Simply having antibodies isn't really that important in itself; what really matters is whether the body has memory B cells that are capable of producing antibodies on demand, and memory T cells that can kill infected cells. Antibody levels naturally wane because it's not actually good for us to have loads of antibodies for every type of virus we've ever encountered being carried in our blood. We produce the antibodies when we need to.
 

brad465

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This maybe a light conspiracy theory, but if there is a plot against the AZ vaccine that has seen its safety concerns get more attention than that of other vaccines, what are the chances its because its cheap not-for-profit marketing has made it highly attractive to the point that rival pharma companies have secretly tried to undermine it, and/or are lobbying other Governments to do the same for the sake of their own profits? I've seen some elsewhere suggest something along these lines, but acknowledge nothing is certain.
 

sjpowermac

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Both. Facebook being the worst, though on parts of that you’re a murderer just for breathing!
Yes, I can well believe it. I know I’ve been a bit critical of some of your posts, but I’m definitely with you all the way on this matter.

People should mind their own business and I’m absolutely appalled at the behaviour of some.

I'm not sure I'd agree - I'd guess that the number of people here that have explicitly said they won't have a Covid vaccine (or at least won't any time soon, which is what I've said) is still in single figures.

There's some more who voted for one or other of the 'no' options in the poll thread, but even so we're clearly in a fairly small minority.

I don't think I've seen anyone try to say others shouldn't have a vaccine if they want to. (Unlike the bloke I saw outside Brixton underground station last week, who was performing some sort of rap which consisted of repeatedly saying/singing 'don't take the vaccine'!)
To be completely honest, I almost didn’t take the vaccine myself as a protest against the passports, which I think are an appalling idea.

Just to emphasise, I’m absolutely not judging or criticising anyone who doesn’t take the vaccine, they totally have my support. I’m always genuinely interested though as to why not, because I always want to try and understand people with different views.
 

Bantamzen

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Do you still encourage all who can to take the vaccine? I’ve noticed that there’s quite an anti-vaccine (or anti-‘medical intervention’) theme running through various threads. I do understand the caution expressed by some, and wondered what your stance is?

To be clear, I fully support that everyone should have a choice to take the vaccine or not, and I’m completely opposed to the vaccine passports.
I really don't think there is an anti-vaxx theme here, there is however a healthy debate on choice which can only be good. I only wish this were more widespread around social media.

Quite honestly (and this isn't a dig at you BTW) the term "anti-vaxxer" is over-used too much. Rather than describe someone who is totally against any form of vaccine & actively expresses this, the term is rapidly becoming something to describe someone who either doesn't agree with the person, or the policies of the government over covid. I've had it used against me quite a few times even after telling people I've had my first jab. Its quite a common theme on social media, yet there are relatively few people who are totally against vaccination, most just want the choice.
 

sjpowermac

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I really don't think there is an anti-vaxx theme here, there is however a healthy debate on choice which can only be good. I only wish this were more widespread around social media.

Quite honestly (and this isn't a dig at you BTW) the term "anti-vaxxer" is over-used too much. Rather than describe someone who is totally against any form of vaccine & actively expresses this, the term is rapidly becoming something to describe someone who either doesn't agree with the person, or the policies of the government over covid. I've had it used against me quite a few times even after telling people I've had my first jab. Its quite a common theme on social media, yet there are relatively few people who are totally against vaccination, most just want the choice.
I hadn’t realised how the term was being used on social media; other than for railways I keep away from it as far as I can for the sake of my mental health. Point noted.

To be fair though, I did make clear that I’m very much pro-people making their own choice and don’t consider it any of my business.

As I mentioned to another poster, I am genuinely interested in the reasons others give.
 

Bantamzen

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I hadn’t realised how the term was being used on social media; other than for railways I keep away from it as far as I can for the sake of my mental health. Point noted.
Its become very much a term used across social media for anyone that doesn't appear 100% compliant with government guidelines, advice, rules, or anyone that simply wants to discuss & debate any of the above.

To be fair though, I did make clear that I’m very much pro-people making their own choice and don’t consider it any of my business.

As I mentioned to another poster, I am genuinely interested in the reasons others give.
Oh I'm not doubting that you are pro-people, hence why I said it wasn't a dig at you. :D
 

DustyBin

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I really don't think there is an anti-vaxx theme here, there is however a healthy debate on choice which can only be good. I only wish this were more widespread around social media.

Quite honestly (and this isn't a dig at you BTW) the term "anti-vaxxer" is over-used too much. Rather than describe someone who is totally against any form of vaccine & actively expresses this, the term is rapidly becoming something to describe someone who either doesn't agree with the person, or the policies of the government over covid. I've had it used against me quite a few times even after telling people I've had my first jab. Its quite a common theme on social media, yet there are relatively few people who are totally against vaccination, most just want the choice.

I think you’ve nailed it there, the term ‘ani-vaxxer’ is now used by some to disparage anybody with different views, and to shut down debate. We’re great at that sort of thing in this country (I expect the same happens elsewhere to be fair).

I personally try and avoid taking any medication as far as possible, even down to avoiding taking painkillers unless really necessary. I’m young(ish), fit and healthy and my immune system is pretty robust; how much of this is the result of my approach I’ve no idea but it hasn’t done any harm. I’m in no hurry to receive the vaccine for the simple reason that I see covid as posing zero threat to me (that’s not statistically correct of course but in reality the threat is minuscule). Those who are at risk from covid, including members of my immediate family, are in the process of being vaccinated so I’m not too concerned about them. So to me, being vaccinated feels unnecessary. I’m sure somebody will point out the flaws in this analogy(!) but I don’t take two ibuprofen each morning in case I get a headache. My vaccine ‘hesitation’ therefore isn’t based on ideology, distrust or fear of the vaccine itself, I’m simply not convinced of the benefits. That said, I may well take it when the time comes as I’m not strongly opposed to it either.

What I would say though is it absolutely must be an individual choice and even if/when I have been vaccinated there’s no way I’ll be producing any kind of passport or certificate, except to travel abroad!
 

Bantamzen

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I think you’ve nailed it there, the term ‘ani-vaxxer’ is now used by some to disparage anybody with different views, and to shut down debate. We’re great at that sort of thing in this country (I expect the same happens elsewhere to be fair).

I personally try and avoid taking any medication as far as possible, even down to avoiding taking painkillers unless really necessary. I’m young(ish), fit and healthy and my immune system is pretty robust; how much of this is the result of my approach I’ve no idea but it hasn’t done any harm. I’m in no hurry to receive the vaccine for the simple reason that I see covid as posing zero threat to me (that’s not statistically correct of course but in reality the threat is minuscule). Those who are at risk from covid, including members of my immediate family, are in the process of being vaccinated so I’m not too concerned about them. So to me, being vaccinated feels unnecessary. I’m sure somebody will point out the flaws in this analogy(!) but I don’t take two ibuprofen each morning in case I get a headache. My vaccine ‘hesitation’ therefore isn’t based on ideology, distrust or fear of the vaccine itself, I’m simply not convinced of the benefits. That said, I may well take it when the time comes as I’m not strongly opposed to it either.

What I would say though is it absolutely must be an individual choice and even if/when I have been vaccinated there’s no way I’ll be producing any kind of passport or certificate, except to travel abroad!
I'm like you, albeit probably a bit older (51). I rarely take painkillers, haven't had any medication in decades, in fact the only regular medication I've taken in the last two was antihistamine for hay fever, and I've even stopped that in the last few years replacing it with honey (and it works!). So when news of a vaccine came out I was fairly certain I wouldn't be having it. However as the hysteria has resonated around the globe, I made the decision to get it when available to me purely on the basis that it would offer me a better chance of travelling abroad without the need for rip off tests. And I'm perfectly comfortable admitting that, I didn't take it as some act of faux-altruism, I did it for me & getting on my jollies again.
 

MikeWM

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To be completely honest, I almost didn’t take the vaccine myself as a protest against the passports, which I think are an appalling idea.

Just to emphasise, I’m absolutely not judging or criticising anyone who doesn’t take the vaccine, they totally have my support. I’m always genuinely interested though as to why not, because I always want to try and understand people with different views.

I described my reasons back in post #1961 of this thread (and some subsequent replies to replies), if you're interested in looking back :)

In particular, I'm concerned about the possibility of ADE, especially given that this was a significant issue in previous attempts at making coronavirus vaccines. I don't believe we can make a proper assessment of whether that is a risk at all, or if it is then how small or large the risk is, until we've been through at least one more winter with the virus circulating (in an 'endemic' state, similar to flu etc.) This is particularly relevant to me as I have a unusual (though fairly minor) immune system condition (for some reason my body doesn't make 'normal' quantities of one of the main antibody types).
 

sjpowermac

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I described my reasons back in post #1961 of this thread (and some subsequent replies to replies), if you're interested in looking back :)

In particular, I'm concerned about the possibility of ADE, especially given that this was a significant issue in previous attempts at making coronavirus vaccines. I don't believe we can make a proper assessment of whether that is a risk at all, or if it is then how small or large the risk is, until we've been through at least one more winter with the virus circulating (in an 'endemic' state, similar to flu etc.) This is particularly relevant to me as I have a unusual (though fairly minor) immune system condition (for some reason my body doesn't make 'normal' quantities of one of the main antibody types).
Many thanks for the reply and the reference to the earlier post. I can certainly appreciate your reasoning, makes perfect sense.
 

kieron

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This maybe a light conspiracy theory, but if there is a plot against the AZ vaccine that has seen its safety concerns get more attention than that of other vaccines, what are the chances its because its cheap not-for-profit marketing has made it highly attractive to the point that rival pharma companies have secretly tried to undermine it, and/or are lobbying other Governments to do the same for the sake of their own profits? I've seen some elsewhere suggest something along these lines, but acknowledge nothing is certain.
To me, the things which marked the AstraZeneca vaccine out were the pause in the trial after someone developed transverse myelitis, the fact that some of the trial participants were given the wrong dose, and the concerns that there were few older participants in the trials. The company's subsequent production issues just added to the problem.

I don't know how this compares to other vaccines, but AstraZeneca seem to me to have made themselves a target for media criticism, rather than anyone else organising it.
 

sjpowermac

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Just in case you missed it I explained my thinking in post #2422 above (as you seem genuinely interested!).
Again, many thanks for that, greatly appreciated. As with previous posters, I can definitely see your logic and it’s clearly something you’ve thought carefully about.

To be honest, from the responses I’ve read, I think those who are not taking the vaccine have actually put far more thought into it than I did in taking it!

My reasons for taking were as follows. Beyond the end of April 2020 I’ve not feared the virus. I have though followed the law. I’m in no way a fan of either lockdowns or masks, I’m actually sick of both.

I hope, though I’m not completely convinced, that vaccines are the way out of this. I didn’t feel that there was any particular danger to me in taking the vaccine and so on balance I felt it was worthwhile in terms of avoiding more lockdowns.

That’s probably a very simplistic way of looking at things, but I’ve had a busy few weeks and didn’t have the mental energy to put more thought into it!

I completely agree with you about vaccine passports, they are abhorrent. I will certainly be avoiding anywhere that they are required, but sadly I fear that the population at large might well be accepting of them.

I didn't take it as some act of faux-altruism, I did it for me & getting on my jollies again.
I took it out of pure-altruism;)
 
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DustyBin

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Again, many thanks for that, greatly appreciated. As with previous posters, I can definitely see your logic and it’s clearly something you’ve thought carefully about.

To be honest, from the responses I’ve read, I think those who are not taking the vaccine have actually put far more thought into it than I did in taking it!

My reasons for taking were as follows. Beyond the end of April 2020 I’ve not feared the virus. I have though followed the law. I’m in no way a fan of either lockdowns or masks, I’m actually sick of both.

I hope, though I’m not completely convinced, that vaccines are the way out of this. I didn’t feel that there was any particular danger to me in taking the vaccine and so on balance I felt it was worthwhile in terms of avoiding more lockdowns.

That’s probably a very simplistic way of looking at things, but I’ve had a busy few weeks and didn’t have the mental energy to put more thought into it!

I completely agree with you about vaccine passports, they are abhorrent. I will certainly be avoiding anywhere that they are required, but sadly I fear that the population at large might well be accepting of them.


I took it out of pure-altruism;)

You make a good point in regard to vaccination being our way out of this, and to be fair that is what we were led to believe so I wouldn’t say it’s a simplistic way of looking at it at all.

I’ll be honest, the attempts at coercion by the government have, if anything, made me more reluctant as a matter of principle but there’s a fine line between standing up for what you believe in and cutting off one's nose to spite one’s face. What we don’t want is to provide the government with any reason to deviate from the roadmap which low vaccine take up potentially would, despite us having vaccinated the more vulnerable and the link between infections and hospitalisations having been broken at this point.
 

kristiang85

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Again, many thanks for that, greatly appreciated. As with previous posters, I can definitely see your logic and it’s clearly something you’ve thought carefully about.

To be honest, from the responses I’ve read, I think those who are not taking the vaccine have actually put far more thought into it than I did in taking it!

My reasons for taking were as follows. Beyond the end of April 2020 I’ve not feared the virus. I have though followed the law. I’m in no way a fan of either lockdowns or masks, I’m actually sick of both.

I hope, though I’m not completely convinced, that vaccines are the way out of this. I didn’t feel that there was any particular danger to me in taking the vaccine and so on balance I felt it was worthwhile in terms of avoiding more lockdowns.

That’s probably a very simplistic way of looking at things, but I’ve had a busy few weeks and didn’t have the mental energy to put more thought into it!

I completely agree with you about vaccine passports, they are abhorrent. I will certainly be avoiding anywhere that they are required, but sadly I fear that the population at large might well be accepting of them.

This is exactly my view on it all.
 

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