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Hind Al Soulia - Riyadh - Saudi Gazette report
LONDON — More than 70 percent of adults in the United Kingdom have received the first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, according to the latest figures published by the government on Wednesday.
Health services across the UK have now administered a total of 57.8 million vaccines between Dec. 8 and May 18, including 36.9 million people with their first dose (70.2 percent) and 20.8 million with both doses (39.6 percent), ensuring they have the strongest possible protection against COVID-19 from a second dose, the UK government said in a press statement.
The government said it met its target of offering a vaccine to the most vulnerable by April 15 and remains on track to offer the first dose to all adults by the end of July.
Commenting on the passing on a milestone, UK Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock said: “Vaccines are turning the tide against this pandemic and I’m incredibly proud the UK has one of the highest uptake rates in the world, with 90 percent of people saying that they have had or will have the jab.”
“Strong evidence shows the vaccines protect you and your loved ones from serious illness and they also reduce transmission, which is why we’ve introduced additional surge measures in the areas with rising cases of the variant first identified in India,” he added.
Meanwhile, UK Vaccines Minister Nadhim Zahawi said: “This is a terrific achievement and is testament to the dedication of NHS workers, volunteers, local authorities and civil servants in every corner of the UK.”
“We are doubling down on efforts to offer over-50s and the most vulnerable a second dose to maximize their protection against COVID-19 while continuing to progress first doses for people aged 36 and over,” he added.
Data from Public Health England’s (PHE’s) real-world study shows the vaccines are already having a significant impact in the UK, reducing hospitalizations and deaths, saving more than 11,700 lives and preventing 33,000 hospitalizations in England by the end of April.
New PHE analysis shows that individuals who receive a single dose of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine have approximately 80 percent lower risk of death with COVID-19 compared with unvaccinated individuals. The report also shows protection against death from the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine rises from approximately 80 percent after 1 dose to 97 percent after 2 doses.
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