Nadiya Hussain urges British Bangladeshis to get Covid vaccine


The Great British Bake Off winner Nadiya Hussain has appeared in a video campaign urging members of the British Bangladeshi community to get vaccinated against coronavirus.

Hussain, Asma Khan from the Netflix series Chef’s Table and MasterChef’s Dr Saliha Mahmood Ahmed have joined with the NHS in an effort to tackle hesitancy surrounding the jab.

In the video message, Hussain says: “Education is empowering. By educating ourselves around vaccination it allows us to encourage our family members, loved ones and communities to get the vaccine.”

The trio of cooking-show favourites have shared the message as part of an international vaccination campaign backed by the United Nations.

According to NHS data, 76,106 people of Bangladeshi ethnicity have received a first dose of the vaccine in England.

Last month Adil Ray, Beverley Knight, Romesh Ranganathan and Denise Lewis appeared in a video calling on members of minority ethnic groups to get vaccinated, which aired simultaneously across channels including ITV, Channel 4, Channel 5 and STV.

Moeen Ali, Adil Ray and Meera Syal
Moeen Ali (left), Adil Ray and Meera Syal appeared in a Covid myth-busting video in February

More than 20 million people in the UK have had a first dose of the Covid-19 vaccine. This includes nine of out 10 people aged 65 and over, but the NHS wants to encourage more people from black, Asian and minority ethnic groups to take up the offer.

Mahmood Ahmed, who is an NHS doctor and won MasterChef in 2017, said: “It is imperative we talk the language of these communities. As an NHS doctor but also as a woman and mother from this community, I hope to use this platform to spread a positive message around vaccination as far as possible.”

Khan, a chef and the owner of the Darjeeling Express restaurant in London, said: “Food is at the heart of our communities and our families, and the quicker we get vaccinated the quicker we will be able to enjoy meals together with our loved ones.”

The NHS had offered all those in its first four priority groups a vaccine by the middle of February; it is now working through the remaining groups.

Nadhim Zahawi, the minister for Covid-19 vaccine deployment, said: “It’s fantastic to see some of TV’s top chefs underlining the importance of getting vaccinated for Covid-19 and we are hugely grateful for their support.

“The government is working hard with the NHS to boost vaccine uptake across a range of communities, and will continue to work with directors of public health, charities and faith leaders to provide advice and public health information to as many individuals as possible.”



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