THE NHS is to enlist ‘celebrities and influencers’ in a major publicity campaign to persuade us to take a coronavirus vaccine when it becomes available, according to the Guardian.
A source is quoted as saying: ‘NHS England are looking for famous faces, people who are known and loved. It could be celebrities who are very sensible and have done sensible stuff during the pandemic.’
No names are suggested, but the royal family and Manchester United player Marcus Rashford, who campaigned over free school meals, are supposedly being mooted.
Doubtless there’ll also be a phalanx of actors, singers, dancers, rappers, DJs, social media wonks, talking heads and various other ‘celebrities and influencers’ wanting to join in. Most of whom I’ll probably never have heard of.
I can see the thinking behind such a scheme. But do we really have to be coaxed, cajoled and patronised by non-medical people reading from a script to make a major decision about our health? Doesn’t the NHS trust us to make up our own minds about whether to have the jab, once we’ve weighed up the pros and cons?
Can’t we just be given a straightforward rundown of the facts about vaccination, read out by some anonymous person in a clear, understandable voice and published in plain English? Can’t we be treated as adults with minds of our own?
After almost nine months of shambolic handling of the Covid crisis, it’s the least we deserve from this Government – no more gimmicks or slogans, no more clapping and banging of pots, no more expensive, embarrassing cock-ups and cronyism. They’d better get this one right.
However, I must point out a glaring flaw in the plan: many of us will struggle to think of any celebrities we ‘know and love’, rather than those we’d run a million miles from.
Personally, if Gary Lineker, Jonathan Ross or Bob Geldof start lecturing me and waving a hypodermic needle, I’ll tell them where to stick it.