Health minister Nadhim Zehawi confirms that the first stage of the vaccination rollout program has been completed.
The UK has reached its target of vaccinating every person within the top four priority groups over the weekend. On January 4, the government had set out a goal to vaccinate around 15 million people over the age of 70–considered to be clinically vulnerable–which also included care home residents and front line health and social care workers by February 15.
Goal reached with a day to spare
The goal was reached a day earlier and figures show that even other people not in the priority list were vaccinated as a way toavoid unnecessary waste of jabs that had not been used.
As confirmed by minister Nadhim Zehawi, in a post on Twitter, over 500,000 of the 15 million who were vaccinated received both jabs meaning they have fully attained immunization.
Zehawi also updated the public on what the future holds for the vaccination rollout program:
We will not rest [until] we offer the vaccine to the whole of phase one, the 1 to 9 categories of the most vulnerable and all over 50s by [the end of] April, and then all adults.
Health secretary Matt Hancock also expressed how proud he was of the milestone achieved in the UK:
I'm so proud of the team - we've hit this fantastic milestone in our battle against COVID-19. In less than 10 weeks we've jabbed over 15 million people across the UK. That's one in every four adults now starting to receive protection from this dreadful disease.
There is so much more to do and I urge anyone eligible to step forward and take up their appointment. The vaccine is our route to freedom - we will beat this virus jab by jab.
Current numbers at an all time low
As of numbers from February 14, the UK saw just under 11,000 new daily COVID infections with a death toll of 258 taking the total amount of deaths since the start of the pandemic to 117,166.