Bedfordshire NHS staff urge reluctant communities to get the Covid-19 vaccination - in 13 different languages

Vaccine take-up is slower in some groups and specific communities

By Laura Hutchinson
Friday, 7th May 2021, 6:13 pm
Updated Friday, 7th May 2021, 6:26 pm
Marva Desir, Deputy Head Nurse for Children’s Services, who works at the Luton & Dunstable Hospital
Marva Desir, Deputy Head Nurse for Children’s Services, who works at the Luton & Dunstable Hospital

NHS staff from Bedfordshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and local GPs have produced a video urging their local community to join them in getting vaccinated against Covid-19

The video can be viewed on YouTube and on the Trust and CCG’s social media channels from today (May 7).

The vaccination programme continues to go well across the county, with over 450,000 people now protected across Bedford, Central Bedfordshire and Luton, having received either their first or both doses of the Covid-19 vaccine.

However, there remain some groups and specific communities where take-up is somewhat slower.

The video celebrates the diversity of the Bedfordshire community, with staff speaking in a variety of languages from around the world.

The message is to demonstrate how the local NHS mirrors the rich diversity of our community, and urge people, no matter where they or their families are from, to join NHS staff in getting the vaccine.

Marva Desir, Deputy Head Nurse for Children’s Services, who works at the Luton & Dunstable Hospital and lives in Luton, is featured in the video.

She said: “I am passionate about encouraging people to get this vaccine.

“That’s especially in the parts of our community which have been most badly affected, and where there is still uncertainty.

“I know from my own friends and family, sometimes there are doubts, but it’s so important to protect yourselves and each other.

“I urge people to join me and take the opportunity to get this vaccine when you have the chance.”

Also featured in the video is Bedford GP, Vijay Nayar, who said: “The best way out of the current pandemic is for the most people to be vaccinated. I’m proud to help spread that message and this video does a great job of getting it across.

“Being vaccinated gives you the best protection from becoming seriously ill if you contract Covid-19. Second doses are equally important, so please don’t delay when you’re invited for an appointment – you need both doses for the highest levels of protection.

“Every single member of the public can help support our key workers and the national effort by following the guidance in place to try to contain the virus and remembering hands, face, space at all times.”

Locally the NHS has been working with key Council partners and Faith Group and Community leaders partners to keep spreading the message, finding new ways to reach the community and spread the positive message.

Patients aged 40 are currently being asked to book their Covid vaccination appointments.

To arrange a vaccination appointment you can use the online National Booking Service, or call 119 free of charge, anytime between 7am and 11pm seven days a week.