What You Need To Know About The Vaccine
WOMAN - UK|July 06, 2021
Uptake for the second dose of the COVID-19 jab is lower than the first. Woman looks at why some people are hesitant, and debunks a few of the myths
Mishaal Khan, Dr Philippa Kaye

When the vaccine roll-out began in the UK in December 2020, many of us were optimistic and patiently waited for our turn in the queue. But as the months have passed and the elderly and vulnerable have been doubly vaccinated, along with a large part of the population, uptake for the second vaccine has been lower than for the first.

At time of going to press, over 43 million people have had a first dose of the vaccine – over 81% of the adult population – and over 31 million have had a second. A single dose of any vaccine is only 33% effective against the Delta variant, according to Public Health England. But two doses give greater protection – AstraZeneca’s effectiveness is 60% after two doses, while Pfizer’s is 88%.

Despite these seemingly reassuring figures, many people are choosing to skip the second dose, though the reasons behind this are unclear. Vaccinations have played a positive role in global healthcare for decades, and while there is a risk of side effects, the damage that COVID-19 causes can be so much greater. Woman delves deeper...


Lucille Whiting is a goldsmith and lives in Haverhill with her husband John and their five children, aged between four and 15.

For my family and me, the past 15 months have been challenging and scary as we’ve battled with COVID-19 and its after-effects. In April 2020, I started feeling unwell with a terrible headache, nausea and vomiting. Soon, my husband John, then 42, became unwell, too, with a high temperature and shortness of breath, and two of the kids came down with flu-like symptoms as well. Both John and I tested positive for COVID-19 and, a few days later, I was rushed to hospital due to dehydration.

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