RELUCTANCE to take the vaccine in Swindon is a real hurdle in the fight to defeat Covid-19.
That was the warning from Great Western Hospital chief executive Kevin McNamara, who fears members of the black, Asian and ethnic minority groups are particularly at risk of not getting jabbed because of misinformation.
Swindon’s hospital is on course to have vaccinated 20,000 people by the middle of this month – with around 400 people receiving it each day.
But Mr McNamara believes it won’t reach a significant part of the community.
He said: “We need to pay attention to the differences between white people having the vaccine and people of the BAME community because that is a concern across the NHS.
“If we are not careful, we’ll embedded further health inequalities in those communities.
“To not have the vaccine because of myths, lies, propaganda – whatever that may be – would be a huge missed opportunity.
“The bit I always think about is we are only as healthy as the poorest and most disadvantaged as those in the country and this virus brings it home to us.
“If we have large pockets of our community unvaccinated and in poor health then this will continue to be a real challenge for us and in the longer term there will be a greater demand on services.
“It’s really important to make this a bigger issue.”