A total of 86,780,455 doses of Covid-19 vaccines has been administered in the UK, with 47,091,889 people receiving the first dose (89 per cent) and 39,688,566 people receiving both doses (75 per cent).
Vaccines are available free of charge and from thousands of vaccine centres, GP practices and pharmacies. Around 98 per cent of people live within 10 miles of a vaccination centre in England and vaccinations are taking place at sites including mosques, community centres and football stadiums.
Data from Public Health England (PHE) shows Covid-19 vaccines are highly effective against hospitalisation from the Delta (B.1.617.2) variant.
The analysis shows the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine is 96 per cent effective and the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine is 92 per cent effective against hospitalisation after 2 doses.
The latest data from PHE and Cambridge University shows that around 60,000 deaths, 22 million infections and 66,900 hospitalisations have been prevented by the vaccines.
Health and Social Care Secretary Sajid Javid said: “Getting 2 doses of a Covid-19 vaccine is the key to enjoying a host of new freedoms safely – whether that be to enjoy a trip abroad with family or a night out with friends – as we continue to build our wall of protection. The vaccines are allowing us to reconnect with the things we love, but more than that, they’re protecting the people we love too. Please make sure to come forward for your jab if you haven’t already as soon as possible.”
The government is working closely with the NHS to make it as easy as possible to get a vaccine, including through ‘grab a jab’ pop-up vaccine sites across the country – for example, at London-based club Heaven last weekend (Sunday 8 August) as well as football stadiums and festivals up and down the country.
All adults in the UK can get their second dose after 8 weeks. This will mean every adult has the chance to have 2 doses by mid-September. People will be required to prove they’ve had 2 jabs to enter nightclubs and other venues where large crowds gather by the end of September.
From 16 August, double-vaccinated people will also no longer be required to self-isolate if they are identified as close contact with a positive Covid-19 case. People will continue to be advised to take a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test to detect the virus and variants of concern and anyone who tests positive will still be legally required to self-isolate, irrespective of their vaccination status.
The government announced that double-vaccinated frontline NHS and social care staff in England who have been told to self-isolate will be permitted to attend work in exceptional circumstances and replaced by testing mitigations. A limited number of critical workers may also in exceptional circumstances be able to leave self-isolation to attend work if deemed a close contact and informed to do so by their employer.
Vaccines Minister Nadhim Zahawi said: “It’s been phenomenal to see first-hand the enthusiasm of the British public for the vaccines, which have now prevented over 66,900 hospitalisations and saved at least 60,000 lives.”
“Getting the jab is one of the most important things you can do to protect yourself and your loved ones – I urge everyone to get booked in and get vaccinated as soon as possible.”
Vaccinated people are far less likely to get Covid-19 with symptoms and even more unlikely to get serious Covid-19, to be admitted to hospital, or to die from it and there is growing evidence that they are less likely to pass the virus to others.
YouGov polling also shows the UK continues to be one of the top nations where people are willing to have a Covid-19 vaccine or have already been vaccinated. ONS data published on August 9 shows that more than 9 in 10 (96 per cent) adults reported positive sentiment towards the vaccine, and vaccine hesitancy for those aged 18 to 21 has almost halved from 9 per cent to 5 per cent. The statistics also showed hesitancy has decreased for those aged 16 and 17 from 14 per cent to 11 per cent.