'Can't wait for mine' - under-30s on prospect of getting Covid vaccine
- Credit: Danielle Booden
EDP readers under the age of 30 have given their take on the prospect of receiving the coronavirus vaccine.
And they were overwhelmingly in favour of getting a jab, with many saying they looked forward to being invited.
Health secretary Matt Hancock told the House of Commons on Monday that people aged between 25 and 29 would be eligible for jabs from Tuesday.
Some under-30s living in parts of Norfolk and Waveney where supply currently outstrips demand among older age groups have already been for jabs.
There are concerns, however, that uptake among younger people will be lower due to the lesser risk of serious illness from Covid-19.
Asked on the EDP's Facebook page whether they would accept a vaccine, readers were predominantly positive.
"Can't wait for mine", commented Matty Sparrow, who lives in Acle. The 27-year-old said a "new normality can begin" once more people have been vaccinated.
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Holly Rumsby, 20, from Norwich, also said she "can't wait", adding "all my friends feel the same".
And Chelsea Spratling, from Attleborough, compared the Covid vaccine to jabs that have been administered in the UK for decades.
She added: "It's a vaccine, simply that. I didn't think twice before all my other jabs, this one is just another one to have".
Lisa Heavey, 21, from Great Yarmouth, said she planned on getting both her doses of the vaccine, while Dani Bacon proclaimed: "Hook it to my veins."
But not everyone responded so enthusiastically, with readers Stacey Mills and Emmer Marie saying the vaccine was "not for me".
Sonny Smith, who lives in Beccles, said he would "definitely not" be going for a jab, while Sam Larke simply added "no thanks".
Last week, Love Island star Alexandra Cane was slammed for making "irresponsible" claims after writing on Instagram she would not be getting the vaccine.
The 27-year-old, who has 1.3m followers on the social media platform, said the jab was "very much in the experimental stages" and that she had "no idea of the after-effects".
Products approved for use in the UK have been stringently tested and extensive information regarding mild side-effects is publicly available.
While serious illness after contracting Covid is less likely in young people, Dr Anoop Dhesi, chairman of Norfolk and Waveney Clinical Commissioning Group, emphasised the importance of everyone playing their part.
"Unfortunately, we hear feedback that many of those who consider themselves fit and healthy don’t think they need a vaccination," said Dr Dhesi.
"Some young people are reluctant because they feel they are unlikely to get seriously ill from Covid-19.
"While older people and those with long-term health conditions have made up the majority of hospital admissions and Covid-related deaths, young people are not immune to serious illness.
“Catching coronavirus can still impact your long-term health, even if you don’t need to go to hospital. One in four people living with long Covid are under 50.
“The vaccination of younger people is also important to stop the spread of new variants and continue to protect vulnerable groups."
As the government looks to encourage as many young people as possible to accept the offer of a vaccine, it hopes a new partnership with some of the country's most popular dating sites will prove persuasive.
The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) has teamed up with apps including Tinder, Hinge and Bumble to pledge benefits to users who make their vaccination status visible.
Daters will be able to display a badge on their profile to show they have had the jab, or will be receiving one soon.
It is, however, entirely based on trust and not linked to official NHS records, meaning there is no way to verify whether potential dates have actually been vaccinated.
Some apps are offering extra incentives such as boosts which make profiles more visible to others, the kind of feature which usually becomes available by paying extra.
Vaccines minister Nadhim Zahawi said the new scheme was an "incredible asset" to the vaccination programme.