Covid-19: UK upbeat after good jab record

London - More than 13.5 million people have been given a jab since the world-first immunisation programme began.



By AFP

Published: Fri 12 Feb 2021, 11:44 PM

Britain closed in on Friday on a mid-February target to offer coronavirus vaccinations to 15 million of its most vulnerable people, raising hopes that a grinding lockdown could be eased.

More than 13.5 million people have been given a jab since the world-first immunisation programme began in early December, with a daily average of 431,232 receiving a vaccine last week.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has vowed to offer jabs to all top four priority groups — which includes over-70s, care home residents and some key workers — by the end of this week.

The devolved government in Wales, which controls its own health policy, said it will reach its target of vaccinating the top four categories on Friday.

Figures showed nearly 22 per cent of people in Wales have been vaccinated, compared to 20.3 per cent in England, 19.2 per cent in Scotland and 18.7 per cent in Northern Ireland.

The UK government in London, which is responsible for sourcing vaccines, is next aiming to have offered jabs to all over-50s by May and the entire adult population by September.

Wales’ First Minister Mark Drakeford said the successful vaccine rollout combined with falling infection rates could soon allow for some restrictions to be lifted “carefully and cautiously”.

“We can see a path into the spring where it will be possible for us to go back to doing some of the things that we’re all missing so much,” he told the BBC.


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