22nd February 2021

I was vaccinated a few days ago. Seems as if things have been moving very swiftly, in some parts of Bristol at least, so that my surgery contacted me somewhat ahead of schedule (my age group was due to be contacted from this last Monday).

‘Britain at its best’ – lots of cheery volunteers; a well organised queuing and booking-in system, positivity everywhere; very helpful professionals. It’s no wonder that this vaccination programme is being hailed for its speed and efficiency.

The credit goes to many, of course; vaccine scientists and manufacturers, the NHS at various levels, volunteers, and, also, the unfailingly cooperative and positive patients… probably the government deserves a mention…! Well, it is a team effort – and a shining example of just what can be achieved when folk work together.

So spare a thought for the billions of people all around the world with little prospect of being vaccinated any time soon. Likely their country can’t afford to buy vaccinations. They may live in remote locations. Local health services are already struggling, with large numbers of coronavirus patients and basic – inadequate – equipment.

Please God the rich countries – including the UK – will work together to provide large numbers of vaccines to the rest of the world. Please God organisations such as the WHO will succeed in getting a world-wide vaccination programme up and running soon. The slogan ‘no one is safe until everyone is safe’ can sound a bit self-serving. This one might be better, ‘inasmuch as you did it to the least of these you did it to me’.

Michael Docker