Postcode lottery for life-saving Covid jabs revealed as 1 in 4 people live in area with no vaccination centre

Postcode lottery for life-saving Covid jabs revealed as 1 in 4 people live in area with no vaccination centre


ALMOST a quarter of people in England live in an area with no vaccination centre, figures show, indicating a postcode lottery for coronavirus jabs.

It comes a month after the UK's vaccine programme got underway and with the government under pressure to increase the pace of the rollout.

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A total of 697 vaccine centres have so far been set up in hospitals, GP surgeries, and public buildings across England, the Sunday Times reports.

But NHS England data shows that 13million of England's 56million population live in a constituency where no site has yet been set up.

Among the towns without any centres ready are Bedford, Newark, and Braintree.

Nottingham, with a population of around 330,000, has only one.

London, where seven-day infections rates are currently around double the national average, has just eight sites for every one million people – a lower level than any other area in the country.

The analysis also found that eight million people in England had to travel ten miles or more to reach their nearest site.

For an additional 1.7million, the distance is 20 miles or more.

The Sunday Times also reports that, for the government to meet its aim to return life to normal by Easter, around two million doses will need to be administered a week, while the current rate is only around 300,000.

Wednesday did see the Oxford/ AstraZeneca vaccine approved for use, with the rollout due to begin on Monday.

Hancock said Britain had ordered 100 million doses of the vaccine, enough to vaccinate 50 million people.

Along with the 40 million doses of Pfizer's vaccine, the UK now has enough doses ordered to vaccinate the entire population, he said.

This week saw the launch of the Sun's campaign urging our readers to become one of 50,000 volunteers needed to help run pop-up vaccination centres across the country.

Hancock also announced on Saturday that, one month after the Pfizer vaccine was first approved in the UK, one million people across the country have received it.

Confirming the news on twitter, he wrote: "The end is in sight & we will get through this together."

The news came amid concerns about rising infections rates and the impact that a surge in coronavirus cases is set to have on hospitals across the country.

Saturday saw the UK record its largest daily jump in cases since the start of the pandemic, with 57,725 positive tests reported.

It was the fifth day in a row that the figure had topped 50,000 and brought the total number of positive tests in Britain to 2,599,789.

A further 445 deaths were also recorded, bringing the overall toll to 74,570.

The week saw reports of London hospitals being overwhelmed by admissions and intensive care patients having to "compete" for ventilators.

There are also fears that cases will continue to rise because of the effects of families mixing over Christmas and the spread of the new strain of the virus.

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