Coronavirus restrictions will remain in place if large numbers of people refuse to take a COVID-19 vaccine, a UK taskforce has warned.
There are fears that millions of Britons may opt out of being vaccinated for coronavirus, with many swayed by debunked anti-vax claims spread online. A number of scientific studies have debunked previous claims by anti-vaxxers, including the false claim that the MMR jab can cause autism.
But two recent surveys show a large proportion of Britons are either against a coronavirus vaccine or unsure about taking one.
On Monday, the government announced that it had signed deals with pharmaceutical companies to secure 90 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines.
That’s on top of 100 million doses of an Oxford University vaccine being developed by the company AstraZeneca. The findings from its first human trials, published on Monday, showed its vaccine is safe and induces an immune reaction.
Kate Bingham, chair of the government’s vaccine taskforce, criticised those backing anti-vaxxers.
“Vaccination has been an incredibly positive force for good in global society and they are not helping themselves or others by pushing an anti-vax message,” she said. Bingham said ‘if large numbers refuse to have it, I think yes there is an issue.”