Half of UK adults ‘fully vaccinated against Covid-19’

Latest figures show Scotland has administered two doses of vaccine to 48.2% of the population.

Half of UK adults ‘fully vaccinated against Covid-19’ PA Media

Half of adults in the UK are estimated to have received both doses of a Covid-19 vaccine, latest figures show.

The milestone comes a day after the Government announced that three quarters of adults had received their first dose.

A total of 26,422,303 second doses have now been delivered since the vaccination rollout began almost six months ago.

This is the equivalent of 50.2% of all people aged 18 and over.

In England, 22,442,383 second doses have been given – the equivalent of 50.7% of the adult population.

England is slightly ahead of the other three nations of the UK, with Scotland on 48.2% (2,137,618 second doses), Northern Ireland on 47.1% (684,398 second doses) and Wales on 45.9% (1,157,904 second doses).

Health secretary Matt Hancock said he was “thrilled” with the figures, and reiterated his encouragement for people to take up the offer of a jab.

He added: “Let’s roll up our sleeves and put this pandemic behind us, once and for all.”

Vaccines minister Nadhim Zahawi described the latest milestone as “heart-warming news”.

He added: “Everyone who has received their second dose can breathe a huge sigh of relief knowing that they have ultimate protection from the virus and the new variants.”

The latest figures have been published by the UK’s four health agencies.

They also show that an estimated 75.5% of UK adults have now received a first dose of vaccine.

In Wales 85.7% of adults are estimated to have had a first jab, some way ahead of England (75.0%), Scotland (74.6%) and Northern Ireland (73.9%).

The Government has said it intends to offer a first dose of a vaccine to all adults by the end of July, and both doses to everyone aged 50 and over by June 21.

Meanwhile, a scientist warned that just because the rollout is going well, people should not consider themselves to be in “Fortress UK”, as a fair distribution of jabs worldwide is needed.

Professor Robin Shattock, head of mucosal infection and immunity at Imperial College London, told a Royal Society of Medicine webinar on Thursday: “We’ve done incredibly well in the UK with rollout of vaccines but we can’t think of ourselves as Fortress UK.

“We need to get those vaccines rolled out to the rest of the world.”

Professor Peter Openshaw, professor of experimental medicine at Imperial College London and a member of the New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Threats Advisory Group (Nervtag), told the webinar it is “unethical” not to share surplus vaccines with the rest of the world.

He called for the “over purchasing that we and others have done” to be addressed “so as to reduce transmission, and reduce disease amongst those who will definitely benefit a great deal (from vaccines)”.

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