UK says all adults to get first coronavirus vaccine shot by July 31
The British government said Sunday that every adult in the country should receive at least the first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine by July 31, a target well ahead of the government’s previous aim to achieve vaccination of its adult population by September.
The Associated Press reported that U.K.’s health secretary, Matt Hancock, said that officials believe they have enough doses of the vaccine to meet the ambitious new target, which would come following the U.K.’s surge to the top of the chart in terms of COVID-19 infections per capita last month.
Hancock tweeted Sunday that 1 in 3 British adults have already received at least their first dose of Pfizer or AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine.
“THANK YOU to all involved in the roll-out & to the British public for staying at home to protect our NHS & save lives,” he added.
Over 17.5 MILLION people have received their first vaccine, meaning 1 in 3 adults have had their first jab.
THANK YOU to all involved in the roll-out & to the British public for staying at home to protect our NHS & save lives.
— Matt Hancock (@MattHancock) February 21, 2021
U.K. officials struggled over December and January with a highly-contagious strain of COVID-19 believed to have originated within the country that forced schools, businesses and other public spaces to close just ahead of the Christmas holiday season.
Vaccination efforts in the country are currently focused on individuals ages 65-69 after the government announced last week that it had completed vaccinations for high-priority groups including frontline workers and residents of long-term care homes.