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The Provincial Grand Lodge of Stirlingshire

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Message from PGM of Aberdeenshire East

"I am delighted to report that the Pfizer Covid vaccine is now here and being given to Health Service workers (doctors, nurses etc), care workers, care home residents and carers etc. The vaccine is given twice four weeks apart. Those vaccinated will NOT be regarded as having significant immunity until at least a week after the second dose. The vaccine is supposed to be successful in 95% of recipients.

I must emphasise that getting the vaccine does NOT MEAN you don't have to wear a mask. The wearing of masks will still be required. Also if a vaccinated person is ever in contact with a Covid case they still have to isolate for the required time incase they carry the virus. Social isolation will also still be required.

As regards side effects these appear to be minimal. There have been two cases of severe allergy that I am aware of in over 100000 given doses. More common side effects include headaches, fever, fatigue and aches and pains much like the flu vaccine.

I received my first dose yesterday and although feeling very tired and "hungover" have no side effects.

Hopefully this vaccine will be available to everybody in the first few months of the year. We need 70% vaccination to achieve "Herd Immunity" which allow us to get back to Lodges HOPEFULLY later next year. The advice being, the more people vaccinated the better.

Brethren hopefully we see light at the end of the tunnel but there shall yet be some hurdles to cross. There have been many items of "fake news" posted about Covid 19 and the vaccines. I don't want to go into this in detail. Suffice it to say that Covid is NOT a mere flu, but a serious illness which I as a doctor have seen first hand. I have also had a great amount of information relayed from my hospital colleagues. A lot has been posted about the vaccine and its rapid development and safety. Having read the scientific data, I see that no corners have been cut in its development and testing---the Pfizer Vaccine was tested on 42,000 people to ensure safety. Given the choice of taking the vaccine or risking severe illness and death by Covid as well as the frequently experienced prolonged after symptoms (breathlessness, fatigue, joint, skin problems etc known as "Long Covid", I am firmly of the opinion that I have made the right decision in taking the vaccine.

Stay resilient safe and well Brethren

Dr Douglas Nicol .

Provincial Grand Master, Aberdeenshire East



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