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UK to step up COVID vaccination campaign with mass vaccination sites | News on the coronavirus pandemic

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Seven centers will open on Monday as the UK government ramps up efforts to tackle the raging virus.

The UK government will open seven mass vaccination centers on Monday as part of efforts to speed up the rollout of the COVID-19 vaccinations the government wants to deliver to all vulnerable people by the middle of next month.

The country, which was the first to approve vaccines developed by Pfizer-BioNTech and Oxford-AstraZeneca, currently vaccinates around 200,000 people a day, Health Secretary Matt Hancock said on Sunday.

About 1.3 million people had received their first two-dose vaccination as of January 3, according to government data, but the UK needs to vaccinate two million people per week to meet its goal of vaccinating people in the care homes, over- 70s, clinically vulnerable people with pre-existing conditions, and health and social care workers by Feb. 15.

Britain is pinning its hopes on a swift vaccination to allow life to start returning to some degree of normalcy by northern hemisphere spring, even as it tackles an escalating pandemic fast.

In addition to the seven major centers, Britain is also looking to 1,000 clinics, 223 hospitals and 200 community pharmacies to deliver vaccines, Vaccine Deployment Minister Nadhim Zahawi said in a statement. The armed forces will also be deployed in support of the National Health Service.

Ellen Prosser, 100, known as Nell, receives the first dose of the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine at a care home in London. The UK wants all nursing home residents, those over 70, vulnerable people and healthcare and care workers to receive the vaccine by mid-February. [Kirsty O’Connor/Pool Photo via AP Photo]

“By working together, day and night, they will make sure our vaccines go on arms rather than on shelves,” Zahawi said. “British forces will use techniques from decades of experience to get things done under some of the most difficult conditions imaginable. They will bring the bravery and brilliance that they have shown in countries like Iraq and Afghanistan to these coasts.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock will present his vaccination plan against COVID-19 – the largest vaccination program in British history – later Monday.

“The UK vaccine delivery plan will be the cornerstone of our exit from the pandemic, but we must all continue to play our part by staying at home, following the rules and keeping our hands, our faces and space at the forefront of our minds when we are away. and around, ”he said in a statement.

Some 81,567 people in the UK have died of COVID-19, the fifth official death toll in the world. More than three million people have tested positive for the coronavirus.

Centers include the 4000-bed ‘Nightingale’ field hospital in the ExCel exhibition center in east London, Epsom racecourse in the west of the capital and a giant leisure center in Manchester. .

Ambulances outside NHS Nightingale Hospital at the ExCel center in east London, which will also become a mass vaccination center [Daniel Leal-Olivas/AFP]


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