About five in six people in the UK aged 80 and over have now received their first dose of a coronavirus vaccine, Matt Hancock announced.
The Minister of Health also announced that two-thirds of 75 to 79 year olds received their first shock as the number of first doses given in the UK exceeded 8.3 million.
Cabinet Secretary Michael Gove said the Pfizer and AstraZeneca pods will be delivered to the UK as planned – despite export controls and EU demand for UK-made kicks.
Concerns have been raised that this could hinder the UK’s access to further stab supplies, but Mr Gove said ministers were “confident” that the vaccination program could continue as planned.
The government appears to be on track to meet its goal of getting the first dose to 15 million people in the highest priority groups – including those over 70 – by February 15.
In an update with the latest numbers on Twitter, Hancock said, “THANK YOU to everyone who has helped launch the vaccine across the UK. We will do it together. “
Government data as of Jan. 29 show that of the 8,859,372 shocks administered in the UK to date, 8,378,940 were first doses – an increase of 487,756 from the previous day’s numbers.
In the UK, three jabs have already been approved for use – the Pfizer / BioNTech and Oxford / AstraZeneca vaccines currently being launched by Rolla, and another one from Moderna, although delivery is not expected until the spring. A fourth vaccine could be approved for use in the UK within weeks of late-stage studies, suggesting it is 89% effective at preventing the virus.
The UK has received 60 million doses of the Novavax jab to be made on Teesside. Participants in its Phase 3 clinical trial in the UK have been shown to be 89.3% effective in preventing coronavirus.
Less than 24 hours later, Johnson & Johnson’s pharmaceutical arm Janssen announced that its single-shot jab was 66% overall effective 28 days after vaccination at preventing moderate to severe coronavirus.
The UK has ordered 30 million doses of the vaccine. Delivery is expected in the second half of this year, when the vaccine is approved by the Medicines and Health Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).
However, experts have stated that people shouldn’t hesitate to get any of the vaccines currently available to wait for another version to become available later this year.
Linda Bauld, Professor of Public Health at the University of Edinburgh, told BBC Breakfast: “I don’t think people should think about what bump to get. It’s not like choosing between different consumer products, for example . ” I think we should realize that we should accept an appointment if we are offered one. “
The government said another 1,200 people died within 28 days of testing positive for Covid-19 on Saturday, while there were another 23,275 laboratory-confirmed cases.
The latest statistics come from January 30th, the anniversary of the first known death of Covid-19 in the UK, that of 84-year-old Peter Attwood of Chatham, Kent.