Katrina Scior and I (Rufus May) came together to talk about our different perspectives on the NHS Vaccine Mandate.
I have been opposing this with other NHS colleagues and Katrina (who is joint course lead of the UCL clinical psychology training course) challenged me on Twitter to debate the mandate with her on Zoom.
Katrina was 2 years ahead of me back in the mid 90s when we both training as clinical psychologists at the University of East London. I remember her vaguely but other than that we have never met.
Our challenge was to have as constructive a conversation as possible about what is a very big and emotive issue.
I asked trainees and other colleagues who have not been vaccinated to contact me prior to the conversation to tell me about the pressure they feel under to get vaccinated.
I have read many powerful stories of people being under pressure to have the vaccine from both course tutors and supervisors. Other supervisors and course tutors have been more supportive.
What is striking is how NHS employers and Clinical Psychology courses are not standing up to the government over this process of bullying people into getting vaccinated. This is the same for governing bodies such as the British Psychological Society and the Royal College of Psychiatry.
I am hugely disappointed at these groups colluding with this policy. And not standing up for their employees right to choose how best to manage their health.
In this discussion I try to explore these issues with Katrina and why I think Psychology along with many other institutions are looking the other way whilst human rights are being undermined.
I also try to convey how the evidence does not support the mandate as more and more studies emerge showing vaccines do not lower transmission rates and natural immunity is likely to be more protective than being vaccinated.