Forty million doses of the Belgium-made Pfizer/BioNTech coronavirus vaccine arrived in the UK on Thursday (December 3).
The UK has procured enough doses to vaccinate approximately 20 million people, with healthcare workers and the elderly slated among the first to get the jab.
The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) laid out the vaccination schedule, detailing who will be vaccinated first, noting that elderly care homes have been placed at the top of the priority list.
According to England’s deputy chief medical officer, Prof Jonathan Van-Tam, the first round of vaccinations was likely to prevent 99 per cent of COVID-19 hospital admissions and deaths.
Van-Tam added that the major focus going forward would be quick distribution of in the “highest volume” possible.
The UK is the first Western country to grant approval for a vaccine.