Covid: Floella Benjamin receives first vaccine dose

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Baroness Floella Benjamin has spoken of her pride after receiving a first coronavirus vaccine dose.

The 71-year-old actress said she would wear a badge saying "I've had the jab" after being vaccinated.

The Lib Dem peer, who came to Britain in 1960 and was born in Trinidad, is known for appearing in the children's programme Play School and received a damehood last year.

Over 6.8m people in the UK have now received a first vaccine dose.

As a member of the House of Lords, Baroness Benjamin has spoken regularly about the disproportionate effect of Covid-19 on black, Asian and minority ethnic communities as well as the knock-on impact of the pandemic.

In September, she told peers she knew two people who had taken their own lives "because they could not cope with the uncertainty of the future".

She is also a member of the Lords Covid-19 Committee.

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The government has set a target for all those in the top four priority groups - around 15 million - to be offered a vaccine by mid-February.

Two vaccines - developed by Pfizer-BioNTech and Oxford-AstraZeneca - are being used. A third, from Moderna, has been approved.

All have been shown to be safe and effective in trials with two doses needed to offer the best protection - now timed 12 weeks apart.

Myth busting

It comes as British Asian celebrities united to dispel myths about the coronavirus vaccine.

Comedians Romesh Ranganathan and Meera Syal and cricketer Moeen Ali appear in a video urging people to get a jab.

A study from the Royal Society for Public Health found 57% of black, Asian and minority ethnic people said they would take the vaccine.

This figure compared with 79% of white people who would do so.