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‘Full steam ahead’ for NHS Covid vaccination programme

12:00am | & Health

More than two-thirds of people aged 65 to 69 have now had their first Covid-19 vaccination, with people aged 64 also being called forward this week, NHS England has announced.

Anyone aged between 65 and 69 who hasn’t yet been vaccinated is being urged to respond to their recent invite to get their life-saving jab at one of the more than 100 vaccination centres and almost 200 pharmacies across the country. Those in this age group are now eligible to receive the vaccine, with more than a million invitation letters sent out and online bookings open.

NHS Chief Executive Sir Simon Stevens said: “The NHS Covid vaccination campaign continues full steam ahead – letters inviting everyone aged 65 to 69 went out a week ago, and already over two-thirds of them have had their first Covid vaccination. Across England overall nearly a third of adults have now had their first jab, and early signs suggest this is contributing to the welcome fall in coronavirus hospitalisation that we’re now seeing.”

Anyone who is 65 or over can get an appointment in one of the vaccination centres by booking through the national booking service, as the NHS looks to help as many people in this age group get their jab and make use of available doses.

Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock said: “Our vaccination programme is accelerating at unprecedented pace and in England we have now vaccinated over 14 million of those most vulnerable to Covid with their first dose.

“Every jab brings hope. Each jab means more of our loved ones will soon be protected from this awful virus and is another step forward in returning to normality in the future. I urge everyone who is eligible for the vaccine to come forward as soon as possible so we can beat this pandemic together.”

Since the NHS became the first health service anywhere in the world to give out a Covid-19 vaccine in December last year, more than 14 million people in England have had their first dose. The latest phase sees everyone aged 65 and over, plus an expanded group of clinically vulnerable people, now receiving the vaccine.

Mass vaccination centres have been opened nationwide, making use of sports stadiums, racecourses, museums and religious settings as convenient community settings where people can access a vaccine and maintain safe social distancing. High street pharmacists have also joined the great mobilisation to protect the country.

People who have received a letter can log on to the national booking service at and choose from 107 large-scale vaccination centres or 195 pharmacy led sites. Anyone unable to book online can call 119 free of charge, anytime between 7am and 11pm seven days-a-week.

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