Sunderland residents urged to ignore Covid-19 'conspiracy theories'

Health chiefs have urged residents in Sunderland to ignore Covid-19 "conspiracy theories" discouraging them from receiving a vaccine.

Saturday, 4th December 2021, 9:45 am
David Chandler, the chief officer and chief finance officer of the NHS Sunderland Clinical Commissioning Group.

Representatives from NHS Sunderland Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) issued the reassurances after councillors reported residents contacting them with various concerns over booster vaccinations.

David Chandler, chief officer and chief finance officer at the CCG, stressed: “All the vaccines that have been approved are safe.

"There’s obviously a small percentage where you may get the odd side effect, but they’ve all been classed as safe for clinical usage.

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“Across the UK and across the world millions upon millions upon millions of vaccines, Moderna, Pfizer and AstraZeneca, have been issued out.

“There’s lots of conspiracy theories going around, they are just conspiracy theories, there are no legs to them, every clinician that you speak to, any GP, will all tell you these are safe.”

He also stated if there were any concerns the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation would be stepping in and raising them.

He continued: “When you think about it as well, when people get their flu jabs, they don’t send us an email saying can you tell me the name of the manufacturer of the flu jab, is it the same as last year etc.”

Dr Carol Aitken added residents should have no concerns receiving a Moderna booster vaccination, even if their first two doses were Pfizer.

She said: “The side effect profiles for Moderna and Pfizer are quite similar.

“I think there has been some angst because people have been expecting one thing and it’s actually another, but the advice is that it’s just as good.

“I have been in clinics reassuring people that we are not coming across any issues and certainly the information that’s been given out with everything is very similar.”

The comments came at the City Council Health and Wellbeing Scrutiny Committee on Wednesday, December 1, after Cllr Chris Burnicle said residents have been coming to him with concerns.

The St Chad’s ward representative said: “I seem to get quite a few conspiracy theories said to me from all over the city.

“I just do want to go back to them with confidence and give them that answer.”

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