Boris Johnson did receive his third Covid-19 vaccine

6 December 2021
What was claimed

Photos of Boris Johnson receiving his Covid-19 booster vaccine do not show him being vaccinated.

Our verdict

Mr Johnson was vaccinated, as can be seen in a video tweeted by the prime minister. A blue cap at the end of the needle is part of the injection device, not a safety cap.

A number of Facebook posts suggest photos of Boris Johnson receiving his third Covid-19 vaccination do not actually show him being vaccinated. Claims include that the injection can’t be seen, while others say the needle was covered with a protective blue cap. 

However, Mr Johnson did receive his third vaccination. 

A video, taken at the St Thomas’ Hospital vaccination centre and tweeted by the prime minister, shows him being vaccinated.  

A spokesperson for the hospital confirmed to Full Fact that Mr Johnson received his booster vaccine.

Furthermore, the blue “cap” referred to in some of the Facebook posts is not a cap but a needle hub, which houses the needle and attaches to the syringe. 

Medical technology company BD (who signed a deal to supply the UK with 65 million needles and syringes for Covid vaccinations) published a guide which shows how the hub is connected to a syringe before use. Another guide from NHS National Services Scotland includes photos of the needle, blue needle hub and syringe.

Why isn’t the nurse wearing gloves?

Some of the Facebook posts also question why the nurse in the photo wasn’t wearing gloves. 

The Royal College of Nursing states that gloves aren’t needed in most cases as vaccination is a “minimal contact procedure” and that cleaning hands between patients and during the procedure will remove or kill germs, including the SARS-CoV-2 virus. 

It adds: “Wearing gloves can get in the way of maintaining good hand hygiene, lead to the spread of infection and cause skin irritation.

“It also increases waste production and costs more.”

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