Pensioner hails Covid-19 jabs as less than half of Newham's black over-80s vaccinated
- Credit: © 2021 Andrew Baker
An 84-year old woman has urged more people to get the Covid-19 jab as figures reveal less than half of Newham's black over-80s have been vaccinated.
Emma Moore from Canning Town was speaking after receiving the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine at Essex Lodge Surgery in Plaistow on Friday, January 29.
The retired care assistant said: "It's quite easy. You hardly feel it. There's nothing to be afraid of. I feel a relief taking it."
Emma, who is a regular at New Testament Assembly Pentecostal Church in Barking, added she is looking forward to having fun with her grandchildren again when restrictions allow.
To those wary of having the vaccination, she said: "There is nothing to worry about. Come out and take the vaccine. It is important. It will help us and help the community."
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Daughter Berylin Moore said: "I'm really happy for her. She was determined to have it. It was reassuring to see it being done."
So far 3,000 people have received the Pfizer-BioNTech jab at Essex Lodge.
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Figures from Newham Council show take-up has varied across the borough's over 80s.
In total, 78 per cent of white over-80s were inoculated up to January 26. But this falls to 69pc of Asians, 63pc of a mixed background and just 44pc of black over-80s.
Seventy-three per cent of Newham's population of 350,000 are from a black, Asian or minority ethnic background.
During the start of the pandemic, the borough had the highest coronavirus death rate. Covid-19 has also been shown to have a disproportionate impact on minorities.
Worries about possible side effects, the speed of vaccine development as well as lack of trust in government, trials and health systems are among the reasons why people are hesitant, according to Newham's public health team.
These are on top of concerns about vaccine ingredients, some media coverage and conspiracy theories.
To anyone with doubts, Dr Hardip Singh Nandra from Essex Lodge, said of the vaccine: "It's safe. It's effective. It will protect you.
"It'll make the people around you safe because you will not be infected or spread the infection. Morally I think everyone is obliged to have the vaccination to protect all of us."
Newham Council has regular online events for people to ask questions to a range of experts.
These are every other Wednesday from 7-8 pm on the Zoom app.
To attend email firstname.lastname@example.org and a registration link will be sent to you.
There are also trained vaccine peer supporters from the community who will listen to questions, concerns and worries.
They can answer basic questions about the vaccine.
To request a conversation or to become a peer supporter email Linda Amankwah Linda.Amankwah@newham.gov.uk