This week is World Immunisation Week which serves as a reminder about the importance of taking up the offer of a Covid-19 vaccine or any other vaccination offered by the NHS.
Thanks to the brilliant work of pioneering scientists along with doctors, nurses and volunteers who give out vaccines, millions of lives are saved each year.
The MHRA, our independent regulator, has approved three Covid-19 vaccines for use in the UK.
In recent months, we have seen the establishment of Covid-19 vaccine centres across the UK, including in our community here in North Yorkshire. Many people have received their vaccines at Gateway House in Skipton and at Ripon Racecourse as well as at local pharmacies and vaccine centres further afield. Over 46.3 million people have now received a Covid-19 vaccine and 12.5 million have received their second dose.
It can be seen that Covid-19 vaccines will play a part in bringing us closer to normality, reducing rates of hospitalization and therefore the amount of pressure placed on our local NHS hospitals.
However, immunization is not a new concept. Vaccines have been created to prevent more than 20 life-threatening diseases, including Polio, Yellow Fever and Measles, allowing people to lead healthier, happier and longer lives.
If you are unsure about having a vaccination, please discuss this with your GP who will be able to provide you with further information and advice.