More than 25MILLION Brits have now received their first Covid jab
More than 25MILLION Brits have now received their first Covid jab just 100 days after first shot was dished out, Government announces
- Milestone means almost half of adults in Britain have been jabbed at least once
- Latest figures up to March 16 show 25,273,226 Brits have received first injection
- Of them, 1,759,445 have had both doses of either Pfizer or AstraZeneca’s vaccine
More than 25million Britons have had at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccine, the Government has announced.
The milestone, which means almost half of all adults in the country have been jabbed, was hit yesterday exactly 100 days after the mammoth rollout launched.
Latest figures show 25,273,226 Brits have received the first injection of either Pfizer or AstraZeneca’s vaccine, while 1,759,445 of them have had their second dose.
The Department of Health said it was on track to achieve the Prime Minister’s target of offering the first dose of all adults by August.
The rollout in England officially opened up to people over 50 today, while Wales started inviting over-50s for shots earlier this month and Northern Ireland expanded its roll-out to the age group two days ago. Scotland will start offering those in the 50-54 age group appointments from next week.
Boris Johnson said: ‘This latest milestone is an incredible achievement – representing 25million reasons to be confident for the future as we cautiously reopen society.
‘Thank you once again to the brilliant NHS, scientists, armed forces, volunteers, and all those who’ve helped our rollout.’
Health Secretary Matt Hancock added: ‘This is an extraordinary feat, coming exactly 100 days after Margaret Keenan received the first authorised jab in the whole world.
‘It has been a national mission, one of the one of the biggest logistical exercises since the war and I’d like to thank everyone who played their part, including every NHS vaccinator, GPs, pharmacists, volunteers and the armed forces for their crucial role in every corner of the UK.
‘We’re ahead of schedule to offer a first dose to all in these groups by the 15 April and I urge everybody eligible to come forward.’
NHS England’s website for booking jab appointments now allows everyone ‘aged 50 and over’ to check-in.
Once all 2.4million people in this age group — the last on No10’s priority list — have been offered a dose, over-40s will be invited. Estimates suggest the roll-out could move onto the next stage before the end of the month.
The expansion comes exactly 100 days after Britain became the first country in the world to begin vaccinating the public against Covid. Grandmother Maggie Keenan received her first dose on December 8 in Coventry.
More than 24.8million Britons have already received their first dose of the Covid jab — and half of all adults are expected to be vaccinated by the end of the week.
Britain is in a race to vaccinate as many people as possible before medics must start dishing out millions of second doses. Regulators widened the gap between doses to 12 weeks, paving the way for the UK to vaccinate millions more vulnerable residents.
NHS England’s widening of the roll-out comes as doctors today claimed patients are cancelling appointments for their coronavirus vaccine because the EU’s mass revolt against AstraZeneca’s jab over unproven blood clot fears has scared them off.
Mr Hancock will hold a Downing Street press conference at 5pm today to update the country on the pace of the vaccine roll-out. He will also likely attempt to reassure the public about the safety of AstraZeneca’s jab.
PATIENTS ARE PAUSING COVID JAB APPOINTMENTS BECAUSE OF UNPROVEN BLOOD CLOT FEARS
British patients are cancelling appointments for their coronavirus vaccine because the EU’s mass revolt against AstraZeneca’s jab over unproven blood clot fears has scared them off.
Doctors involved in the UK’s rollout say Brits due their second dose have called with concerns about the vaccine, despite the EU’s own drug regulator, as well as the UK’s and the World Health Organization all insisting it is safe.
One GP claimed up to 10 per cent of people scheduled for appointments were either not showing up, asking to cancel or double-checking which vaccine they were getting.
NHS doctor and volunteer Dr Karan Raj claimed he was ‘inundated’ with people saying they were worried about it and Dr Mohan Sekeram, a GP in South London, said the international row has led to patients refusing the vaccine.
The former chief of Britain’s vaccine regulator the MHRA, Sir Kent Woods, said European officials had ‘dented public confidence’ with their ‘disorderly’ reaction to the issue, and he described attempts to link the jab to clots as ‘a big jump’.
Doctors and officials warn that it is far more dangerous for people to not get vaccinated and even the EMA has urged people to keep taking the vaccine because blood clots aren’t actually any more common than usual.
Officials and scientists fear the knee-jerk reactions from Europe, which is now staring down the barrel of a third wave of Covid because of its own haphazard vaccination programme, risk derailing Britain’s attempts to vaccinate its way out of lockdown if people start to back out of getting their jabs.
Many Britons on the street yesterday said the row hadn’t put them off, calling it ‘scare-mongering’ and saying ‘the chances of getting hit by a bus are probably higher’ – but others said it had made them nervous about getting the jab or added to concerns they already had about its safety.
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