Despite 49, 238 covid deaths, UK to make vaccination voluntary, none for children
London, Nov. 10, 2020 (AltAfrica)-UK Health Secretary Matt Hancock says covid-19 vaccination will not be required for children and that uptake for adults would be voluntary across the country
“We are not proposing to make this compulsory – not least because I think the vast majority of people are going to want to have it,” he said.
This is despite another 194 people with coronavirus died across the country on Monday compared to 156 a day on Sunday, government figures show.
According to the data, it brings the UK total deaths to 49,238.
Mr Hancock told Sky News that the Government had invested in six different vaccines to make sure there will be enough for everyone who needs it.
He added: “We have secured 40 million doses in total of the Pfizer vaccine and that means we can roll it out to 20 million people because it requires two doses per person.
“This is why we have been buying across the board.
“We need to secure enough for everybody who needs one according to that clinical prioritisation.”
Speaking after early trials showed the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine to be 90% effective, the minster said it was “absolutely reasonable for people to see this as a step forward” in the fight against the virus.
However, he warned, that it is “one step amongst many that we collectively need to take.”
Hancock said he had asked the NHS to “be ready” to roll out doses of a new coronavirus vaccine “from the start of December
Despite the promising Pfizer development he said there would not be an immediate rush to vaccinate the population.
“The central expectation of the bulk of the rollout and deployment has always been in the first part of 2021,” he told Sky News. “This is a promising step but that’s the central expectation of our timescale.”
The Health Secretary emphasised that as soon as a vaccine is given the green light, it will be deployed “fairly” across the whole of the UK.
He said: “The UK Government has bought the vaccine for the whole of the UK and it will be rolled out fairly across the whole of the UK with the same prioritisation no matter where you live in this country.
“The same goes for mass testing, making sure we roll that out across the whole UK.”
Mr Hancock also revealed that the Government is to provide £150 million to support GPs in the deployment of a successful jab.
The Health Secretary said that once it becomes available, the vaccine will be delivered through care homes, GPs and pharmacists as well as “go-to” vaccination centres set up in venues such as sports halls.
“We will be working across the NHS with the support of the armed forces seven days a week, over weekends, over bank holidays, to get this rolled out into people’s arms as quickly as possible,” he told a separate interview with BBC Breakfast.