As I’m about to get my second dose of the vaccine, I think it’s important to share my experience so far.

Why is the UK Defence Journal publishing this? Good question.

One of the biggest threats this country faces is disinformation on COVID19 and the vaccine for the disease. Every day there are thousands of tweets spreading scare stories about the vaccine that otherwise intelligent people take as gospel. Additionally, as many of you know, I work in the NHS so this is an important topic for me personally as I see first hand the damage done by the spread of the virus and the panic caused by the misinformation surrounding it.

The misinformation relating to the virus is so severe now that Twitter is placing a warning on Tweets that advance unsubstantiated rumours, disputed claims, as well as incomplete or out-of-context information about vaccines.

“We will enforce this policy in close consultation with local, national and global public health authorities around the world, and will strive to be iterative and transparent in our approach,” the company said in a statement.

The policy will include false claims that suggest immunisations and vaccines are used to intentionally cause harm to or control populations and statements about vaccines that invoke a deliberate conspiracy.

“False claims which have been widely debunked about the adverse impacts or effects of receiving vaccinations or false claims that COVID-19 is not real or not serious, and therefore that vaccinations are unnecessary”, said the tech firm.

The better protected the public are against this disinformation then the better off the UK is. It’s that simple.

It is incredibly important to note that, despite the misinformation, the vaccines approved for use in the UK have met strict standards of safety, quality and effectiveness set out by the independent Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).

The COVID-19 vaccine was only made available to the public after meeting strict safety and effectiveness criteria. That cannot be stressed enough. Any vaccine that is approved must go through all the clinical trials and safety checks all other licensed medicines go through.

So far, thousands of people have been given a COVID-19 vaccine and reports of serious side effects, such as allergic reactions, have been very, very rare as with any vaccine.

No long-term complications have been reported.

What should be expected when going for the vaccine?

If you’re wondering what to expect when going for your vaccine, your experience will of course differ slightly but I’ll explain what happened to me in order to try and allay any anxiety over the process.

I received an email in advance informing me of my appointment time and all the other details I needed to know to be in and out of there as quickly as possible. I was heading to Glasgow’s ‘Nightingale hospital’, the NHS Louisa Jordan. An exhibition hall turned temporary hospital.

When I got there, I was asked a series of questions about how I was feeling on the day and then asked to queue up inside. Once inside I was asked if I had any symptoms etc. I then proceeded into a massive hall.

I queued up and was taken to a cubicle, asked some more questions by a friendly nurse to make sure it was safe for me to get the vaccine. I was then jabbed and it was all over in a few minutes.

Image may contain: indoor
The NHS Louisa Jordan during the start of mass vaccinations for NHS staff.

I was advised to stay within the clinical area for 10 minutes just to make sure I was okay after the jag, a routine measure in a vaccination clinic. I left after the 10 minutes, I felt perfectly fine.

I was mostly relieved it was over with.

I then headed for the train home. If you’re anxious about going and getting the vaccine then I hope that this has helped even in a small way.

I urge anyone who is able to get the vaccine to do so as soon as they are offered it. Not only will this allow life to return to normal sooner rather than later, it will ease the massive pressure on the NHS its staff. I received my first dose back in December and I’m eagerly awaiting my second in the coming weeks. Ignore the misinformation, speak to a medical professional if you have concerns.

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Geoffrey Roach

Well done George…a shot on the arm for the rest of us!

Geoffrey Roach

…should be in, but the thought was there.


You can edit comments now 😉

Geoffrey Roach

Cheers Jonny…will try next time.

Daniele Mandelli

Mum and Dad have both had it now, and I’m taking my wife for hers tomorrow as she qualifies through social worker/health problems status.


I hope things start to improve for all of you in the UK.

I must say from my side of the world, Australia, I’ve been a bit shocked at the size of the UK covid problem.

Hopefully the vaccine can help to significantly reduce the infection rate.

We are still a month or so away before the vaccine starts to be rolled out here.

Fortunately there are less than 150 active cases currently here in Oz, and only about 30 or so in hospital, none in ICU.

Anyway, hope you all stay well.


Mark B

Here it is winter & we are in an over-populated ageing Country. At least we have made a good start with the vaccines which are the only way out of the problem. I can see my planned holiday to Oz and Nz being delayed a little. Keep safe.


Mark B,

Yes I think your holiday to our part of the world will be delayed a little, probably more than a little too.

Border control is pretty tight, mostly returning citizens and residents arriving.

All international arrivals have to go into a mandatory 14 day quarantine.

John Hartley

I had a phone call, out of the blue, yesterday, from my GP, saying “did I want the vaccine (1st dose) on Saturday, at a centre 7 miles away?” I jumped at it. I thought it would be at least another month before I would get it. They obviously think I am more feeble than I think I am. For once, I am not going to argue.

John Hartley

So I had my first C-19 jab (Pfizer) last night. Apart from running 20 minutes late, it was well run with friendly volunteers & staff. Some of the old dears, who could barely walk, who went for their jabs without making any fuss, were an inspiration. Unlike the middle age medical secretary (large highlighted blonde hair) who had to be coaxed into it & took twice as long as the old folks. My only side effect is a sore spot on my arm where the jab was. Woke me up, when I rolled onto it in my sleep. Hopefully, that… Read more »


Had mine last week as an NHS worker. I had the Pfizer jab. No side effects whatsoever. Not even a sore arm. Bring on jab no. 2.


Myself and Mrs Gunbuster had our second jab last week.
No issues what so ever.
Will probably become a 9-12 monthly event from this point forward if the reports on effectiveness are to be believed. Similar to the flu jab I suppose.


It’s probably true, but it gives me conniptions just thinking about that. Its not something we can keep up without a major shift in both expections around the health system as well as funding and manpower. The nhs is effectively writing checks it can’t cash, we are shifting resources from things that will still need doing ( effectively we are build a long long list of stuff that will need doing soon) and paying overtime like money is going out of fashion ( we have staff working on their days off all over the place). If Covid 19 were to… Read more »


Nice to see a positive take on the epidemic. Fed up with all the negative news, that seems to come out of the MSM. Today was about a drop in UK car production last year by 29%. Well no surprise there that that happened when factories closed and people weren’t in a position to need or buy a new vehicle. Yes report the facts, but it would have been nice if they had also stated that German production was down 25% and French 25.5%. With the two additional sets of data, it is hardly a big issue, especially given the… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli

Ha. Well said. You should have posted this over on the current vaccine thread as that is EXACTLY the sort of negativity I was trying to highlight.

Things are always spun that way.


God I wish I could share it mark I really do. But what is really needed is for our leaders to start a grown up conversation around reality. In this case it’s a long term plan of how we are going to live with this disease. That I am afraid is going to mean some fundament changes in a lot of our systems as well as individual behaviours and expectations. Infectious diseases have alway sculpted our society ( your world is build to protect you from any number of scourges that killed our ancestors in droves).


Getting the vaccine is as much about duty to society as a whole as it is to protecting yourself. Im not a actually happy that a couple of key questions have been answered around RNA vaccines ( Its of professional interest and I actually kept up to date on where they were on RNA messengers before Covid and so I know the key questions that need long term studies to answer). I also think there should have been a bit more of a grown up discussion around these low but theoretically possible risks vs the actual realised significant risk of… Read more »