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'We won't be able to hug loved ones for months despite vaccine,' warns doctor

This Morning’s Dr Philippa Kaye has warned that it will be months before we can hug any of our loved ones.

During Friday’s episode, the TV doctor joined Alison Hammond and Dermot O’Leary in the studio to answer viewers’ health-related questions.

Dr Philippa, who confirmed she was cancer-free last year, took a call from a viewer called Mark, who wanted to know whether the Covid-19 jab was safe for cancer patients.

‘There are lots of people out there particularly who might have been on the shielding list, who might have been immunosuppressed and having cancer might be a reason why you might have been on that list,’ she began.

‘Thinking “oh, should I get it, is it safe?” Now there are two vaccines available currently and both of them are safe if you are on that immunocompromised shielding list.

‘And, actually, the reason you are on that list, is because you are at higher risk of complications of Covid and so, it’s more important than ever that when you get your letter that you actually go and have your vaccine.’

‘So, it is safe and please go,’ she added.

‘But, once you do go it doesn’t mean that you can go around hugging everybody because no vaccine is perfect. We all have to stick to the regulations until the numbers of the virus out there goes down.’

‘So, when can we hug?’ quizzed Alison. ‘That’s all I want to know, when can we hug? Does everyone have to have it?’

Dr Philippa replied: ‘Not everyone is going to have to have it but I think it’s going to be a good few months left.’

The UK’s Covid-19 vaccination programme is well underway, with a new vaccine proving ‘effective’ in fighting against the UK and South African strains of the bug.

The rollout has been extended to over 70s and those who are clinically extremely vulnerable as part of the government’s aim to vaccinate 14 million people by mid-February.

After the vaccine has been given to the high-priority groups, the rest of phase one will be rolled out.

This Morning airs weekdays at 10am on ITV.

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