Britain could be free of tight Covid restrictions by the end of February, after Ministers pinpointed the 15 million people who would need vaccinations to end the cycles of crippling lockdowns.
With the ‘game-changing’ Oxford jab expected to be approved within days, the Government hopes that enough doses will soon be available to inoculate those most vulnerable to coronavirus within weeks.
Writing in today’s Mail on Sunday, Chancellor Rishi Sunak says the Covid breakthroughs – combined with the newly minted post-Brexit trade deal with the EU – signalled an optimistic new era for the UK.
Government sources say that between 12 million and 15 million people have been identified as likely to require hospital treatment if they contract coronavirus, or be at risk of dying from it. Once this group has received the vaccine – which some officials hope could be achieved by the end of February – then the NHS would no longer be at risk of being overwhelmed if the virus spread through the greater population. That would remove the main argument for shutting the economy at a stroke.
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