Northland DHB’s chief executive says he is very much “alive and kicking” despite a “nasty rumour spread by anti-vaxxers" that he had died of a severe heart attack, following a third dose of the Covid vaccine.
Dr Nick Chamberlain shut down the rumour on Thursday.
Not only has he not yet received his booster dose, Chamberlain said bookings don’t actually open for those eligible for their booster until Friday, November 26.
He said this is yet another example of how “dangerous” statements from anti-vaccine groups can be, with the rumour even reaching his daughter who lives in Wellington.
At 84 per cent, Northland DHB currently has the lowest rate of people with a first dose of the Covid vaccine in New Zealand.
Chamberlain urged those who haven’t already had the vaccine to do so before the Auckland border opens for the Christmas period.
“Unfortunately, we have seen from this latest outbreak how quickly this virus has spread within our region, and we need our population to get vaccinated before our borders open,” he said.
He encouraged those who were uncertain, or lacking confidence in the vaccine to speak with someone they trust to get reliable information, not from the likes of Facebook or Instagram.
"Don't rely on what you read on social media, please. Instead, speak to a member of your whānau or your local iwi or Māori Health Provider. Or make an appointment with your GP.
“They are offering free appointments to patients who have questions and concerns about the vaccine."