New Zealand doctor hopes to tackle 'brewing distrust' of vaccines with comic book

A north Canterbury doctor has written and illustrated a comic book about the safety of vaccines after worrying many patients were getting fake news about jabs.

Dr Richard Clinghan, a rural GP in Oxford, said he was inspired to write his book, Jenny & the Eddies, after the measles epidemic in 2019.

He said he hoped this book can inspire others to get a COVID-19 vaccine when it becomes available in New Zealand.

"Originally I started off by trying to frighten people about the consequences but that often creates a lot of conflict with the doctor-patient relationship," he told The Project on Monday.

"So I wanted to come up with a way that was non-threatening. A fun, entertaining way of getting across the message about the importance of vaccine safety."

Dr Clinghan said he was "surprised" by the number of people who were starting to mistrust vaccines.

"I think a lot of people are frightened by what's going on in the world at the moment and as a result there is a brewing distrust of vaccines and things like that," he said.

"I hope that when we do get this COVID-19 vaccine, it will be a bit of a game-changer and lots of people will be able to see what the power of vaccines are and how safe they are."

Jenny & the Eddies was self-published and printed in New Zealand.