Half of all adults under the age of 30 in England will have received at least one dose of a Covid-19 vaccine by Sunday (26 June), the NHS has said.
The huge achievement comes as hundreds of walk-in vaccination sites opened across the country this weekend in a bid to encourage more people to come forward for their jab.
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At a glance: 5 key points
- More than 4.2 million people between 18 and 29 have been vaccinated after the rollout was opened up to all age groups across England.
- A new online search tool allows people in England to input their postcode to find their nearest walk-in vaccination site.
- The drop-in centres are open for adults having their first vaccine dose, but people over 40 who had their jab at least eight weeks ago, and under 40s who had it at least 12 weeks ago, can able to drop-in for their second dose.
- Anyone who attends a walk-in centre for their first dose this weekend will have their vaccination record updated online and will then be able to book an appointment for their second dose using the NHS national booking system.
What’s been said
More than one million vaccination bookings were made between Monday and Wednesday this week and the NHS is contacting people aged 40 and over to bring forward their second dose in line with updated guidance.
Dr Nikki Kanani, NHS England director of primary care, hailed the “incredible” progress being made in the vaccination rollout.
She said: “The uptake we have seen among 18 to 29-year-olds in the last week shows how much young adults – like all those before them – recognise the importance of getting protected, as the NHS continues to deliver the largest and fastest vaccination programme in history at a phenomenal rate.”
“NHS teams and their local partners are working flat-out this weekend to vaccinate as many people as possible at convenient walk-in sites up and down the country so if you are 18 and over, go along and ‘grab a jab’ – with every vaccine in an arm, we are one step closer to our summer freedoms.”
Vaccines Minister Nadhim Zahawi described the figures as a “phenomenal achievement”, adding that it is “fantastic” that so many young people are coming forward to be vaccinated.
He said: “I’d like to recognise the herculean efforts of all those who are working tirelessly to vaccinate as many people as quickly as possible and would like to pay my thanks to all the NHS staff, volunteers, local authorities and civil servants for their commitment.
“Vaccines are the way out of this pandemic and I’d urge everyone – regardless of age, religion or beliefs – to get their jabs so we can beat this virus and reclaim all of our lost freedoms.”
The “grab a jab” campaign comes as the UK recorded a further 15,810 lab-confirmed Covid-19 cases as of 9am on Friday (25 June). This is up 50 per cent on the 10,476 new cases reported a week earlier.
A total of 64,089,251 vaccinations took place in England between 8 December and 25 June, including first and second doses, according to figures released by NHS England on Saturday (26 June).
NHS England said 36,944,843 were first doses, a rise of 177,515 on the previous day, while 27,144,408 were second doses, marking an increase of 133,375.
More than four in five adults have now received their first jab and over 60 per cent of people are now fully vaccinated.
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