An all star line up has joined forces with the NHS to encourage people to come forward and get the lifesaving COVID-19 vaccine when they are invited in a short film released today.
The booster video is released as the NHS has revealed that more than 120,000 appointments for the jab were made yesterday (Friday) before 9am as bookings opened up to people aged 40 and 41 years old.
The flood of new bookings followed the third new group of people being invited to come forward just this week, with everyone aged 40 and over now eligible to get a slot.
Sir Lenny Henry, Liz Hurley and David Walliams join TV actors Lydia West and Navin Chowdhry to dispel myths around vaccination to boost uptake of the NHS COVID jab.
The film is the second commissioned by Professor Lord Ara Darzi, the leading doctor who is the Co-Director of the Institute of Global Health Innovation, part of the Imperial REACT COVID Surveillance Study Group and volunteered on COVID wards at the height of the pandemic.
It comes as the NHS COVID vaccination programme announced that more than nine in ten people aged over 45 have receiving at least one dose.
Two-thirds of the adult population in England have received their first dose, and more than a quarter have been fully vaccinated.
The first light-hearted film showed Sir Michael Caine and Sir Elton John going head-to-head in an audition for a COVID information film.
The new film also shows stars ‘auditioning’ as they tackle common rumours and misconceptions around the COVID vaccine and encourage everyone to get jabbed when it is their turn.
It opens with Sir Lenny Henry saying:
Lydia West, of drama It’s a Sin, which gripped the nation earlier this year, goes on to address some common concerns which may prevent people from having the vaccine such as:
Doctor Foster actor Navin Chowdhry adds that:
Later in the video, David Walliams calls on everyone to get vaccinated
Liz Hurley urges people to “roll-up your sleeve, it’s not just your own life you’ll be saving” and as the audition-style video draws to a close, Sir Elton John who makes his second cameo in an NHS video, is told “you didn’t get it last time, you’re not getting it this time” as we see the singer take up his offer of a jab.
The comedy video builds on NHS action already taken to increase uptake, including campaigns supported by Bake Off star Nadiya Hussain and reaching communities with pop-up clinics in places of worship, which has seen uptake more than triple among ethnic minority groups since February, outpacing the national average.
Lydia West said:
GP and NHS national medical director for primary care Dr Nikki Kanani, thanked stars for their support. Dr Nikki Kanani said:
Professor Lord Darzi added:
Doctors, nurses and other health care professionals are delivering the life-saving jab at more than 1,600 sites ranging from cathedrals, mosques and temples to racecourses, sports stadiums, cinemas and museums.
The NHS made history when 90-year-old Maggie Keenan was the first recipient in the world outside a clinical trial of a Pfizer vaccine at Coventry Hospital on 8 December 2020.