Individuals in top four priority groups offered coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine

Individuals in top four priority groups offered coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine

The Department of Health and Social Care has announced that, as of Sunday 14 February 2021, all care home residents and staff, health and social care workers, people aged 70 and over, and the clinically extremely vulnerable (ie those in priority groups 1–4) have been offered a coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine. These first four groups account for 88% of coronavirus-related deaths, and now over 15.3 million people in the UK have received their first doses. As a result, the NHS has begun offering vaccines to the next two priority groups, ie those aged 65 and over and people with underlying health conditions making them clinically vulnerable to coronavirus. The government aims for all priority groups, 1–9, to have a vaccine offered to them by May 2021 and all adults by September 2021.

The priority groups that have now had an offer for a vaccine are:

• priority group 1—residents in a care home for older adults and their carers

• priority group 2—individuals aged 80 years and over and frontline health and social care workers

• priority group 3—individuals aged 75 years and over

• priority group 4—individuals aged 70 years and over and clinically extremely vulnerable individuals

As of 15 February 2021, NHS England is beginning to offer vaccines to:

• priority group 5—individuals aged 65 and over

• priority group 6—individuals aged 16–64 with underlying health conditions which put them at higher risk of serious disease and mortality

The remaining three priority groups which the government aim to offer a vaccine to by May 2021 are:

• priority group 7—individuals aged 60 years and over

• priority group 8—individuals aged 55 years and over

• priority group 9—individuals aged 50 years and over

The Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, in a statement at the coronavirus press conference, said:

‘we have vaccinated more than 90 per cent of those aged over 70 but don’t forget that 60 per cent of hospital patients with Covid are under 70‘.

Johnson continued, referring to not knowing exactly how effective the vaccines are in reducing the spread of infection, ‘We have grounds for confidence… we don’t today have all the hard facts that we need’.

Sources:

• The most vulnerable and health and care workers offered COVID-19 jab as government hits target to protect those most at risk

• Prime Minister's statement on coronavirus (COVID-19): 15 February 2021

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