Superdrug set to roll out coronavirus vaccines across UK
Prime Minister Boris Johnson, speaking from Downing Street, said: “We’ve not vaccinated 1.26million people in England, 113,000 in Scotland, 49,000 in Wales and 46,000 in Northern Ireland. So, all together, nearly 1.5million people across the UK have now received their first dose and within two to three weeks all of them will have a very considerable degree of immunity. It is thanks to the arrival of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine, which can be stored at room temperature, that we can accelerate the pace of vaccination in care homes.
“We’re using that vaccine in care homes for the first time today and by the end of the month we hope to have offered every elderly care home resident a vaccine.”
The Prime Minister admitted there would likely be “difficulties” in the rollout of the vaccine, but that the army had been drafted in to assist with the set-up.
Mr Johnson said: “Let’s be clear, this is a national challenge on a scale like nothing we’ve seen before and it will require an unprecedented national effort.
“Of course, there will be difficulties, appointments will be changed but… the army is working hand in glove with the NHS and local councils to set up our vaccine network and using battle preparation techniques to help us keep up the pace.”
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NHS England Chief Executive Sir Simon Stevens, who joined the Prime Minister in Thursdays’ briefing, said there will be a “huge acceleration” in the vaccination programme over the coming weeks.
Mr Stevens told Downing Street they had 39 days to meet the target set by Mr Johnson to vaccinate the most vulnerable members of society.
He said the NHS would be increasing the supplies of the vaccine, the numbers of places where it is being delivered and the numbers administering the jabs.
Mr Stevens said: “We need a huge acceleration if we are, over the next five weeks, going to vaccinate more people than we typically vaccinate over five months during a winter flu programme. We have got 39 days to do it.”
Who can get the Covid vaccine?
The NHS is currently offering the Covid-19 vaccine to people most at risk from coronavirus.
The vaccine is being offered in some hospitals, some pharmacies and hundreds of local vaccination centres run by GPs.
It’s currently being given to:
- Some people aged 80 and over who already have a hospital appointment in the next few weeks
- People who live or work in care homes
- Health and social care workers at high risk
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How can I get the vaccine?
The vaccine will be available through the NHS and will be offered to people in a specific order.
In order to get the vaccine, you will have to be registered with a GP surgery in England.
If you haven’t yet signed up but wish to do so, you can find out how to join online here.
In addition to local surgeries, the vaccine will be offered more widely, and at other locations as soon as possible.
The order in which people will be offered the vaccine is based on advice from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI).
The crucial thing is, you can’t sign yourself up to get the vaccine.
The NHS will let you know when it’s your turn to be vaccinated, and it’s important you don’t contact the NHS for a jab before you’re approached.
As soon as more vaccines become available in the coming months, the jab will be offered to other groups of people.
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