A YOUNG council officer has told how researching the coronavirus jab persuaded her to get vaccinated.

Mariyam Emam was initially hesitant to get immunised because of social media myths about the side effects including possible infertility.

The 30-year-old support worker with the Blackburn with Darwen Council Help Hub has now joined the jabbed.

Mariyam, who comes from Blackburn, said: “When it was early in the vaccine roll-out, there were lots of theories flying around and I was seeing things on social media warning young women who want to have a family not to get vaccinated. I felt like I hadn’t had time to think about it properly and make a decision.

“My parents, grandparents and siblings were having the vaccine, and I talked about it with them a lot, but I just didn’t feel confident in having it back then.”

“I wasn’t an ‘anti-vaxxer’ – my reasons for not getting vaccinated were just very personal to me. I carried on sharing information about local vaccine clinics and the NHS bus with my friends and family, while doing my own research into the vaccine.”

Mariyam noticed the decline in Covid case rates and deaths in areas with good vaccine take-up, and felt satisfied that the jab was working.

With more vaccines available in Blackburn with Darwen, through pop-up clinics and walk-ins, Mariyam felt there were lots of opportunities to get the jab.

She said: “I thought, it’s being made really easy for us. What am I waiting for? And I was telling other people to have the jab without going myself! I booked my appointment the next week.”

Mariyam had her first jab in early June, and will have her second in August.

Lancashire and South Cumbria Covid-19 Vaccine Director Jane Scattergood said: “It’s just as important to get vaccinated now as it was on day one of the programme, and it has never been easier to walk in and get your jab while you are out and about.”

Now 88 per cent of borough residents aged 18 and over have had one jab and 69 per cent both.