The British monarch participated in a video call with the officials responsible for rolling out the vaccine in the U.K. The recorded call was broadcast on Friday.
The 94-year-old compared the effort that’s gone into Britain’s national vaccination campaign to the way people worked together during World War II.
"Well, once you’ve had the vaccine, you have a feeling of, you know, you’re protected, which is, I think, very important," Elizabeth explained. "And as far as I can make out it was quite harmless, very quick. And I’ve had lots of letters from people who’ve been very surprised by how easy it was to get the vaccine."
The queen pointed out that being vaccinated helps protect everyone, not just the person receiving the shot.
"It’s obviously difficult for people if they’ve never had a vaccine because they ought to think about other people rather than themselves," she said.
Some 18 million people have been vaccinated in the U.K. However, worries persist that some of the groups most at risk are hesitating to get their shots.
The queen and her husband, Prince Philip, 99, received their first dose of the vaccine last month.
In an unusual move, the palace made the information known to prevent speculation about their health.
The call with health officials this week showed the queen continuing with her duties even as Philip rests at King Edward VII’s Hospital in what royal officials called a precautionary measure. Buckingham Palace said Tuesday that he was being treated for an infection.
During the conversation, the queen described COVID-19 as a "plague" that has swept across the globe. She urged the vaccination drive leaders to "keep up the good work."′
She likened the community spirit to get vaccinations done to the experience of the country during World War II.
Derek Grieve, who heads the Scottish government’s Vaccinations Division, raised the example of how people from the Isle of Benbecula, in the Outer Hebrides, rallied together with the Coast Guard to set up a vaccination center in a community hall within days.
"So my lasting reflection, ma’am, would be if I could bottle this community spirit and use it, not just for the vaccination program but for other things, I think the job would be done," he said.
The queen said: "Wouldn’t it be nice."
Other members of the royal family have continued their official duties during Philip’s hospitalization.
Philip, whose 100th birthday is in June, married Elizabeth in 1947 at London’s Westminster Abbey five years before she became queen. He is the longest-serving royal consort in British history.
He last stayed in the hospital in December 2019, when he was treated for a "pre-existing condition" and discharged after four nights.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.