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UK government unveils ‘largest vaccination programme in British history’

The UK’s COVID-19 Vaccines Delivery Plan, revealed yesterday, has set out the government’s ambitions to get ‘tens of millions of people’ vaccinated by spring 2021.

Included within the plan are a number of goals set out by the government, with the overarching aim of rapidly scaling up the COVID-19 vaccination programme.

This includes the aim for everyone in England to be within ten miles of a vaccination site by the end of January, with vaccines also set to be offered to people living in ‘highly rural areas’ via mobile teams.

In addition, the plan details the potential for the NHS to deliver at least two million vaccinations per week in England by the end of January.

The government is also aiming to offer all residents and staff in care homes across England a vaccine by the end of the month.

According to the government, this will be made possible through the ‘rapid’ expansion of the COVID-19 vaccination programme, with vaccinations now set to be available at 206 active hospital sites, 50 vaccination centres and around 1,200 local vaccination sites.

The government added that the expansion of the programme will mean all adults will be offered a vaccine by the autumn.

“It’s taken a tremendous amount of hard work and dedication to make such an incredible start to this ambitious deployment programme. Our vaccine deployment plan sets out exactly how we will harness these efforts to expand the programme quickly and safely,” said Health Secretary Matt Hancock.

“Our UK COVID-19 vaccines delivery plan maps our route back to normality, but it does not mean we can be complacent and it is mission critical that everybody abides by the restrictions in the coming weeks,” he added,

The plan also reiterates Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s commitment to offer the first vaccine dose to all people in the top four priority groups – identified by the Joint Committee of Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) – by 15 February.