U.K. Sticks to Vaccine Target Even as Pace of Rollout Drops
(Bloomberg) -- The U.K. government said it remains on track to offer coronavirus vaccines to all adults by July, after the number of shots administered dropped in recent days.
Some 192,341 first doses were given on Monday, falling about 30% from the previous week, according to government figures published Tuesday. That’s down from a high of 598,389 first doses reported on Jan 30.
Vaccines Minister Nadhim Zahawi said on Twitter that “supply is finite” but was “about to get bigger,” and promised the government would deliver on its targets. The pace of the program is integral to Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s plan to get Britain back to normal life over the next four months. He wants all curbs to be lifted from June 21, as long as the pandemic is contained.
The U.K. announced a significant acceleration of its vaccination program this week, with adults due to be offered a shot by the end of July and everyone over 50 by mid-April. One in three adults had a first dose by Feb. 21, with some 17.9 million first injections administered.
Johnson’s official spokesman Jamie Davies, speaking in a regular briefing with journalists, said the government remained “confident” the targets would be met.
“As we said from the start, there will be daily fluctuations in the number of people who receive it day-on-day,” he said.
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