Hold up: Gov scientist and meme king Jonathan Van-Tam went to Notts Uni

He wants you to know that the vaccine is NOT a yoghurt

Professor Jonathan Van Tam, Deputy Chief Medical Officer (and esteemed UoN alumni), has been trending in the last 24 hours after appearing on the Downing Street news conference, BBC Breakfast and This Morning with Holly and Phil. He has been praised for his matter-of fact, uncomplicated approach towards discussing the virus, labelling anti-vaxxers as ‘nonsense’ and jokingly describing the vaccine as “not a yoghurt”.

Graduating from Medicine at The University of Nottingham in 1987, Van Tam spent five years in hospital-based clinical medicine and eventually returned to Notts (who could stay away?) in 1997 as Clinical Senior Lecturer.


Professor Van Tam MBE became England’s Deputy Chief Medical Officer in 2017, supporting Dame Sally Davies until 2019, when Professor Chris Whitty, who we’ve seen a lot of this year, took on the role. Van Tam’s duties are assisting the CMO in independently advising the government on medical matters and being the head of profession for all directors of public health in local government.


All of our future medics clearly have big shoes to fill – expecting to see each and every one of you with Phil and Holly at least once.