‘We get jook!’ Jamaicans share vaccine experience online

An aerial view of Kingston, Jamaica.

As Jamaica’s coronavirus vaccination programme gets underway, many who have received the first shot of the AstraZeneca vaccine have taken to social media to share their experience.

Jamaica received its first shipment of 50,000 doses of the vaccine, on Monday. The country’s drive to get those shots into the arms of its phase 1qualifyers, including healthcare workers and the elderly, began 48 hours later.

Since then, the vaccine has been given to former Prime Ministers PJ Patterson and Bruce Golding, as well as the nation’s chief medical officer, Jacquiline Bisasor-McKenzie, assumedly to encourage confidence in the treatment among the population.

However, it’s the experiences of the health care workers, and others fortunate enough to receive the first of the two-shot jab, shared to social media, that will prove the most effective in addressing anti-vaccination sentiments in Jamaica.

Using the hashtag #vaccinateja, many have taken to Twitter to share their experiences, good, bad and the in-between, to present a clearer picture of the impact of the vaccine once received. With symptoms ranging from mild fevers and nausea to dizziness and soreness at the injection point, dozens of people have taken up the charge to document the process.

Below are some selected responses: