Good news story – 1st Covid-19 vaccine jab administered

Today, December 8th, there’s only one story in town. A UK grandmother has become the first person in the world to be given the Pfizer Covid-19 jab as the start of the national mass vaccination programme.

a baby sitting in a chair: Margaret Keenan, 90, was the first to receive the jab in the UK, having been given the life-saving vaccine at 6.31am in Coventry
© via REUTERS Margaret Keenan, 90, was the first to receive the jab in the UK, having been given the life-saving vaccine at 6.31am in Coventry

Margaret Keenan, who turns 91 next week, said it was the “best early birthday present”. She was given the injection at 06:31 GMT – the first of 800,000 doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine that will be dispensed in the coming weeks. Up to four million more are expected by the end of the month.

In Wales, health and care workers have been the first people to get the vaccine today, which is being rolled out from seven sites across the country as part of the UK-wide immunisation programme. It came a day after Wales reported 2,000 Covid cases in a single day for the first time. Rates in some areas are among the UK’s highest.

Dr Ami Jones
Dr Ami Jones: intensive care consultant at Aneurin Bevan Health Board, “I have no qualms taking this whatsoever”

In Wales, health and care workers have been the first people to get the vaccine today, which is being rolled out from seven sites across the country as part of the UK-wide immunisation programme. It came a day after Wales reported 2,000 Covid cases in a single day for the first time. Rates in some areas are among the UK’s highest.

Covid in Wales timeline
pandemic timeline in Wales from 1st case to 1st vaccine

People will receive a vaccination card from NHS Wales after their first dose of vaccine. These will display details of the vaccine name, date of vaccination and the batch numbers of each dose. They will also have the person’s name and date of birth, but no other personal details, and will have a reminder of the date of the second dose. click source

Vaccination card
Vaccine card
They also display the vaccine name and batch number

Although this is a momentous day, the NHS faces a huge task in rolling out this vaccine. First there needs to be a smooth supply – and already there are reports of manufacturing problems which means the UK is expecting less than half of the 10 million doses of the Pfizer jab it was planning for by the end of the year.

The fact it needs to be kept in ultra-cold storage and in batches of 975 units is an added complication that has meant it cannot yet be taken into care homes to vaccinate residents, who are the very highest priority group, or sent out to GPs to run vaccination clinics in the community. NHS bosses hope to receive guidance from the regulator next week on how to get around this.

But these factors illustrate why the UK is still pinning its hopes on a second vaccine developed by Oxford University. That one can be kept in fridges and so is easier to distribute, is British made and – what is more – there is an ever-growing stockpile ready to use. If that vaccine gets the green light from regulators, there will be a genuine hope the first few months of 2021 will see rapid progress in offering the most vulnerable jabs so the UK can return to something closer to normality. Click full BBC source

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