“My darling daughter took me to a private care doctor"
A Labour councillor has been suspended after she claimed to have received a Covid-19 vaccination from a “private care doctor”.
Jamila Azad said on Facebook that she got a jab from a private medic, despite “a long wait for NHS waiting list”.
However, the government said vaccines were only allowed to be administered by the NHS, and it is illegal for them to be administered outside of the service.
In a now-deleted post, Ms Azad said:
“My darling daughter took me to a private care doctor for Covid 19 vaccine.
”A long wait for NHS waiting list. We had take away from Akber take away.”
The post included photos of the councillor and another woman, believed to be her daughter. They appear to be receiving jabs from a medic in PPE.
Despite the claims, her family said she received the vaccine through the NHS.
Ms Azad represents St Clements and Cowley Marsh on Oxfordshire County Council, and St Clements on Oxford City Council.
Susan Brown, the Leader of the Labour Group at Oxford City Council and Liz Brighouse, Leader of the Labour Group at Oxfordshire County Council issued a joint statement in relation to the post.
It said: “Following a recent post on her Facebook account about her Covid 19 vaccination, Cllr Jamila Azad has been suspended by the whips of both the Oxfordshire County Council and Oxford City Council Labour Groups, pending further investigation.
“Cllr Azad has now removed the post in question.
“We will be making no further comment on this matter until formal investigations into it have been completed.”
A spokesperson for the Department of Health and Social Care said the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) had only authorised Covid-19 vaccinations for use through the NHS.
The spokesperson added:
“It would be illegal to administer vaccines outside of the NHS and, if this happened, the MHRA would take enforcement action.”
The MHRA said it was investigating. Lynda Scammell said:
“Vaccines that are not authorised for use in the UK, and if purchased from outside the legitimate NHS supply route, cannot be guaranteed to meet standards of quality, safety and effectiveness.”
It is unclear where the councillor may have received the vaccine.
Councillor Craig Simmons, who leads the Greens at Oxford City Council, said Ms Azad would have breached the authority’s code of conduct if she had paid for the vaccine privately.
He said: “If [she] did indeed bypass the NHS and secure a vaccine from a private medical facility through illegal means then her position is untenable.
“Principles such as selflessness, honesty and integrity are core to the code and Councillor Azad’s behaviour, should the allegations be proven, would fall far short of what is expected and required of all councillors.”