After months of anticipation, the first
has finally been approved for use in the UK.
Pfizer/BioNTech’s jab will be rolled out across the UK from this week, although the bulk of the rollout will happen in the new year.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock has confirmed that vaccinations will start with the most elderly, people in care homes and their carers, before coming down the age range, with NHS staff and the clinically extremely vulnerable also high on the priority list.
Speaking to BBC Breakfast, he said: “2020 has been just awful and 2021 is going to be better, and help is on its way with this vaccine. We can now say that with certainty rather than with all the caveats that I normally have to put around that.
This will take time to roll out. You’ve got to have that 21 days between the jabs anyway and we’ve got to get this rolled out at the speed at which it can be manufactured.
“I’m confident now with the news today that from spring, from Easter onwards, things are going to be better and we’re going to have a summer next year that everybody can enjoy.”
Here’s everything you need to know about the
vaccine, including how it works and when you could receive it.
The vaccine will be rolled out in the UK from Tuesday 8 December.
However, the bulk of the rollout will take place in the new year.
The UK has secured 40 million doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, with 10 million due in the UK by the end of the year.
Patients need two doses, meaning not enough shots have been secured for the entire UK population.
However, it is likely other vaccines, including one from Oxford University, will be approved in the coming weeks and months.
In total, the UK has secured 357 million doses, including:
100 million doses of University of Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine
40 million doses of BioNTech/Pfizer vaccine
7 million doses of Moderna vaccine
60 million doses of Novavax vaccine
60 million doses of Valneva vaccine
60 million doses of GSK/Sanofi Pasteur vaccine
30 million doses of Janssen vaccine
The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) has set the order of priority for the coronavirus vaccine rollout in the UK.
Care home residents and staff will be the first to receive the vaccine, followed by those over 80 and health and social workers.
The vaccine will then be given to those over 75, before being rolled out to Brits of descending age:
1. older adults’ resident in a care home and care home workers
2. all those 80 years of age and over and health and social care workers
3. all those 75 years of age and over
4. all those 70 years of age and over
5. all those 65 years of age and over
6. high-risk adults under 65 years of age
7. moderate-risk adults under 65 years of age
8. all those 60 years of age and over
9. all those 55 years of age and over
10. all those 50 years of age and over
rest of the population (priority to be determined)