UK Offers Covid Vaccine to Citizens Over 50 Years Old

UMMATIMES - Britain on Monday (12/4), has offered everyone over the age of 50 the first dose of the Covid-19 vaccine. This was done to achieve the target of fulfilling vaccines in the main priority groups by April 15.

The UK has run one of the fastest vaccination programs in the world, only behind Israel in the proportion of its population receiving at least one dose of Covid-19 injection. The government says it offers at least one opportunity for priority groups 1 to 9, which includes all adults over the age of 50, those who are clinically vulnerable, as well as health and social care workers, before the deadline Thursday (15/4).

"We have now passed another very significant milestone in our vaccine program by offering injections to everyone in the nine highest risk groups," Prime Minister Boris Johnson said in a statement.

"We will now move forward with completing the crucial second dose and making progress towards our target of getting the vaccine to all adults by the end of July."

The success of that vaccine program has bolstered Johnson's roadmap out of lockdown. Britain on Monday (12/4) allowed outdoor shops and restaurants to open and reopen. But the UK has slowed down the rate of the first dose to ensure people in the high priority group receive the second dose - even though April has less vaccine supplies than March.

Johnson's office said the government remains on track to offer all adults injections by July 31. People in their late 40s are expected to be the next to be invited to get vaccinated, although a final decision has yet to be made.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunization (JCVI) previously said that it expects to continue with an age-based approach to vaccination, rather than prioritizing people based on occupation or other risk factors. Last week, the JCVI also said that they were suggesting alternatives to the AstraZeneca vaccine for those under 30 years of age. This is given the possibility of a side effect of blood clots which is very rare and the low risk for this age group to become infected with Covid-19.