Cam Sight is urging people from minority ethnic communities to get the Covid vaccine.

Advisers from the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) have raised concerns over Covid vaccine uptake among black, Asian and minority ethnic communities (BAME) as research showed up to 72% of black people said they were unlikely to have the vaccination.

The figures come from the UK Household Longitudinal Study which reports historical issues of structural and institutional racism and discrimination are key reasons for lower trust levels in the vaccination programme.

Barriers to vaccine uptake also include perception of risk, low confidence in the vaccine, distrust, access barriers, lack of vaccine offer or lack of communication from trusted providers and community leaders.

To help overcome barriers Khadija Raza, Cam Sight Outreach Worker has publicly endorsed the vaccine roll-out and recently received her vaccination at Hinchingbrooke Hospital.

Khadija said: “I took the vaccine to protect myself, my family and my community. My job is to provide essential support to blind and partially sighted people, but I have not been able to provide face-to-face support due to the risks surrounding the virus. People with sight loss are really missing these services, therefore I felt like I needed to take the vaccine to make the world safer, so I can do my job to the best of my ability.

In addition, being visually impaired means that social distancing is more difficult for me, so now I feel safer knowing that I have been vaccinated. Ordinarily, the BAME communities are a thriving life force, I would love to see them returned to their former glory and if the vaccine is what we need to take to make that happen, then I think we should.”

Cam Sight is advising blind and partially sighted people across Cambridgeshire to take up their offer to be vaccinated. Please get in touch with us if you require support with your vaccination appointment.