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Councillor urges Prestonians to get Covid vaccine despite his own severe reaction to jab

Posted on - 18th January, 2021 - 8:28pm | Author - | Posted in - Health, People, Plungington, Politics, Preston Council, Preston News
Councillor Pav Akhtar

Preston City Council Councillor Pav Akhtar is urging his fellow Prestonians to get the Covid-19 vaccination, despite suffering severe side effects after his own jab.

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Pav had to seek medical assistance when he started struggling to breathe in the minutes following his injection.

After receiving the vaccination some weeks ago due to his job in the NHS, Pav says he has now recovered from the worst of the reaction.

Describing what happened after the jab, Pav said: “The change in my breathing was the first sign I spotted. It came 10 minutes after the jab.

“I tried to put it out of my mind, thinking I was having a small wobble and it would fix itself, but the breathing carried on getting deeper, more strained, and out of sync.

“Then the fever started creeping in. Soon after I was feeling clammy and cold. When the burning sensations running through my back and up to my head kicked in, I realised it was time to get some medical help.”

Read more: Rapid Covid testing available at Preston mosque

Although Plungington Councillor Pav says he was aware of the risk of a reaction, he admits he was shocked to find himself in that situation.

“Given that I’m relatively healthy, and sailed through the risk assessment before the jab, I didn’t imagine I would be among the stats of those having such a strong impact.

“Luckily, the NHS vaccination centre provides full medical care and support staff on-site to assist with any side effects. Local hospitals are also trained to be able to identify what is going on and provide support.”

Read more: Pride of Preston: Pav named as one of top 100 in Rainbow Honours Power List

Pointing to the recent worrying statistics on Covid-19 – Preston now has the fastest growing infection rate in England – Pav said it’s vital that local communities continue to follow restrictions and look after one another.

“We’ve had an average of 935 daily deaths in the UK over the last week. This is more than 16 people in every million dying each day from Covid.

“It’s fair to say that central government’s mishandling of its privatised track and trace system, the conflicting communication messages, the lack of adequate financial support for individuals and families, the too-late lockdowns, refusal to impose a negative Covid test on air passengers, and the dysfunctional school closures have all been factors.

“We can’t change that now, so we have to keep on doing our best to protect ourselves, our loved ones, and everyone else in the community – whether it’s in the shops, in schools, or in clinical services.

“So, as difficult a year as it has been for everyone trying to keep up with all the changes and extra levels of care to keep our families and selves safe, we need to stick at it for a while longer.

“We simply can’t afford to be complacent about Covid or its devastating impact where it takes hold.”



Pav says he is speaking out to reassure the community and encourage people to get the vaccination.

“My experience shows that any side effects, on the rare occasion they arise, can be managed by my NHS colleagues who will continue to take precautions when administering the jab, giving advice to patients, and engaging in social distancing precautions.

“So please get a vaccination when it is offered to you and let’s keep our communities safe.”

Read moreSee the latest Preston news and headlines

What do you think of Pav’s experience with the vaccination? Have you been vaccinated? Let us know in the comments below.

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