Army of 10,000 medics and volunteers recruited by NHS to deliver 100m doses of Oxford Covid vaccine within days

 

In a swift move to curb the wild spread of the Covid-19 surge in the UK, the government has done a mass recruitment of personnel to ensure a fast vaccination of the public. 

The Sun news reported that ten thousand medics and volunteers have been recruited by the NHS to help deliver the Oxford Covid-19 vaccine.

The government is waiting for regulators to give the jab the green light, which could happen as early as Monday, but already 100 million doses of the vaccine have been bought.

In anticipation, mass vaccination centres at sports stadia and conference venues are primed, with January 4 the target day for the rollout of the vaccine, the Telegraph reports.

A source told the paper that already: “Tens of thousands of vaccinators and support staff have been recruited.

“At the moment, we are operationalising everything for the 4 January for the first Oxford/AstraZeneca jabs in arms.”

The Sun also understands the Government will overhaul the priority list when the new UK vaccine is given the go-ahead.

Teachers and some key workers will be eligible for injections, currently only given to the elderly, clinically vulnerable and health and care home workers.

Hundreds of pop-up GP-led centres are on the way as part of the huge vaccination drive to get the country back up and running in the new year.

Doctors, nurses, paramedics and pharmacists will staff the centres with the aim to open the first of them next week as the government vowed to “throw the kitchen sink” at getting Brits the jab, says the Daily Mail.

A government source told the paper: "The vaccine is the way to make us safe and get us through this pandemic. We are throwing the kitchen sink at it.’

A target for two million to receive their first dose of either the Oxford or the Pfizer vaccine within a fortnight has reportedly been set.

The eagerly awaited vaccine, being developed by the University of Oxford with drug company AstraZeneca, is seen as crucial to the easing lockdown restrictions in the new year.

Last night Chancellor Rishi Sunak sounded an optimistic note as he predicted the vaccine will finally give the UK a road out of its Covid misery after billions were spent to ensure a smooth rollout.

“There is light at the end of the tunnel with this vaccine," he said.

“I’m confident if we all pitch in together we will get through this as we have done through this year, and we can look forward to a brighter future.

“Especially now with the deal with our European friends and partners concluded — that gives us a strong platform to look forward optimistically, put the divisions of the past behind us, embrace our future with confidence and optimism.

“As we hopefully get through coronavirus, we can start rebuilding and create prosperity and opportunity for British families up and down the country.”

Scientists have been working around the clock since February with trials beginning in April and have managed to achieve in 10 months what usually takes years.

Already the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine has begun being rolled out.

But because it has to be stored at -70C it can’t be distributed as quickly as the Oxford jab, which can be kept at 2C in a regular fridge, meaning more people can be vaccinated and more quickly.

AstraZeneca boss Pascal Soriot said he believes the jab has "the winning formula" to produce a 90 per cent success rate when taken in two separate doses.

Mr Soriot said: “We think we have figured out the winning formula and how to get efficacy that, after two doses, is up there with everybody else.”

He said the new data will show his researchers have achieved an efficacy roughly equal to Pfizer at 95 per cent and Moderna at 94.5 per cent.

And the vaccine provides “100 per cent protection” against severe Covid illness needing hospital treatment.

It is hoped the rollout of the vaccine will help 15 million Brits receive at least one crucial injection before the end of February and spark the lifting of restrictions.

The Oxford jab is also due to be administered alongside the Pfizer jab at 83 hospital hubs and 400 GPs which are already operational, with a further 200 GPs due to be online by this weekend.

Patients will need two jabs, a month apart, and will be able to get their first at pop-up sites including football stadiums and drive-through centres.

News that the vaccine could be rolled out as early as next week could not come soon enough for millions of Brits living in Tier 4.

by March'

The number of those in the strict restrictions increased by six million to 24 million people - 43 per cent of the population - in a bid to stop the spread of the mutant Covid.

Scientists are warning that the whole of England “must be put into Tier 4 immediately” to stop the spread of the mutant coronavirus strain gripping the country.

Independent Sage, who provide independent advice to the UK government, have said thousands more people will now be infected in the new year.



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