Prince Charles takes swipe at antivaxers

Prince Charles and other senior members of the royal family have been vociferous in their support...
Prince Charles and other senior members of the royal family have been vociferous in their support of Covid vaccines. Photo: Reuters
Prince Charles has criticised those lobbying against coronavirus vaccines, saying they can "protect and liberate" some of society's most vulnerable members.

In a wide-ranging article for the Future Healthcare Journal in which he called for an integrated approach to healthcare, the heir to the British throne also took a swipe at those speaking out against Covid-19 shots.

"Who would have thought ... that in the 21st century that there would be a significant lobby opposing vaccination, given its track record in eradicating so many terrible diseases and its current potential to protect and liberate some of the most vulnerable in our society from coronavirus?" he wrote.

The 72-year-old, who tested positive for Covid in March last year, and other senior members of the royal family have been vociferous in their support of the shots.

Last month, he and his wife Camilla (73) had their first Covid-19 doses, while 94-year-old Queen Elizabeth II, has also encouraged people to get a shot saying it did not hurt and those who were wary about it should think of others.

However, the focus of the prince's article, published on Wednesday, was his message that long-term health issues needed to be addressed by integrating science, public policy and personal behaviour.

"I also believe that medicine will need to combine bioscience with personal beliefs, hopes, aspirations and choices," Charles wrote, calling for an open-minded approach to complementary medicine whose virtues he has long espoused despite criticism from some in the medical profession.

In 2011, a leading professor of complementary medicine accused the prince of "quackery", saying that he and other backers of alternative therapies were "snake-oil salesmen" who promoted products with no scientific basis.

Charles said he had always advocated "the best of both worlds" to bring evidence-informed conventional and complementary medicine together and seek a middle ground over the issue.

"Only then can we escape divisions and intolerance on both sides of the conventional/complementary equation, where on the one hand, the appropriate regulation of the proven therapies of acupuncture and medical herbalism is opposed, while on the other we find people actually opposing life-saving vaccinations," he wrote. 

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