COVID-19: Vaccine programme moves to phase two after 15 million receive first coronavirus jab | UK News

Letters are being despatched to these aged over 65 and the clinically susceptible to invite them to receive the first dose of their COVID-19 vaccine.

It comes a day after the UK reached the goal of giving at the very least one dose of the vaccine to 15 million individuals – nearly all of them most in danger from the illness.

Which means that the first 4 precedence teams – these aged over 70 and the clinically extraordinarily susceptible – have all been invited to receive the first dose of the vaccine.

A small quantity – simply over 537,000 – have obtained the second and ultimate dose, which means they’ve most safety from the virus.

Some 1.2 million invites have been despatched to the over-65s and the clinically susceptible, with an identical variety of invites anticipated to be despatched this week.

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PM hails ‘important milestone’ for vaccinations

Individuals who receive a letter can be in a position to select the place they receive their vaccine from greater than 100 massive vaccination centres or nearly 200 pharmacy companies.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation defines clinically susceptible individuals as these with situations together with continual respiratory illness reminiscent of continual obstructive pulmonary illness (COPD), cystic fibrosis and extreme bronchial asthma.

The federal government is aiming to vaccinate the 17 million in teams 5 to 9 by the top of April, one thing that can be executed alongside administering second doses for a lot of within the first 4 teams.

In a video message on Sunday, Prime Minister Boris Johnson mentioned there was nonetheless “a good distance to go” and that there would “undoubtedly be bumps within the highway”.

In the meantime, Mr Johnson will define on 22 February how the nation will exit the present lockdown, as stress grows from some Conservative MPs to reopen sectors reminiscent of hospitality and tourism.

Over the weekend, greater than 60 Tory backbenchers are mentioned to have backed a COVID Analysis Group letter calling on the PM to commit to a agency timetable, beginning with the reopening of faculties on 8 March and ending with the lifting of all authorized restrictions by the top of April.

Mr Johnson seems extra cautious, nevertheless, saying the information would want to be studied “very, very laborious” for proof that the vaccines are driving down the variety of every day circumstances and deaths.

He has mentioned he doesn’t need to be compelled right into a “reverse ferret” if restrictions are eased too quick, inflicting a resurgence.

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Chris Hopson, chief govt of NHS Suppliers, mentioned: “We should not let down our guard in our combat towards the virus.

“There’s nonetheless lots to perceive earlier than we could be wholly sure of the influence of the vaccination programme.”

On Sunday, Mr Johnson had hailed 15 million vaccinations as a “really nationwide UK-wide effort”, including: “We have executed it collectively. And I need to thank every one who has helped make it occur.”

The 15,062,189 who’ve had a first dose is the equal of twenty-two.5% of the entire UK inhabitants, and 28.6% of individuals aged 18 and over.

Vaccines minister Nadhim Zahawi mentioned on Twitter that the federal government would “not relaxation” till the vaccine was provided to all over-50s by the top of April, after which all adults.

Additionally on Sunday, the UK recorded an extra 258 COVID-19-related deaths, and 10,972 new circumstances – down from the 621 deaths and 13,308 circumstances recorded on Saturday.