Britain Locks Down Over Virus Surge Despite New Vaccine Rollout

Britain Locks Down Over Virus Surge Despite New Vaccine Rollout

Argentina also licensed the AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccine, as well as India, on Sunday, which will allow the country of 1.3 billion people to start one of the largest vaccination campaigns in the world.

Monday, Britain began using the British AstraZeneca/University of Oxford vaccine, becoming the first country in the world to do so.

Dialysis patient Brian Pinker has become the first person to be vaccinated with the new Oxford/AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine after being given the jab at Oxford University Hospital, NHS England said. "I can now really look forward to celebrating my 48th wedding anniversary with my wife Shirley later this year".

More than 13 million vaccine doses have been distributed nationwide, but efforts to inoculate health workers and vulnerable people have been hampered by logistical problems and overstretched hospitals and clinics.

Various European governments are facing accusations of a sluggish vaccine rollout, particularly in France, where only 2,000 people have been vaccinated so far compared to some 317,000 in Germany.

The so-called Oxford vaccine has been delivered to a small number of hospitals for surveillance purposes, which Oxford University said is standard practice, and the bulk of available supplies will be disseminated to hundreds of vaccine sites later this week. Officials said hundreds of new vaccination sites - including local doctors' offices - will open later this week, joining the more than 700 vaccination sites already in operation. - Britain today began the mass rollout of the Oxford-AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine, a cheap and easy to distribute shot that experts hope will help crush the pandemic.

University of Reading associate professor in cellular microbiology Dr Simon Clarke added: "The conditions for use allow the second dose of the vaccine up to 12 weeks after the first, with some protection being provided from 22 days".

Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Sunday said he was "fully reconciled" to having to introduce tougher restrictions in the next few weeks.

The UK is in the midst of an acute outbreak, recording more than 50,000 new coronavirus infections a day over the past six days. To date, there have been 2.7m cases of Covid-19 in the United Kingdom and more than 75,000 people have tragically died of the viral disease.

By Monday, 26,626 patients are now confined in hospitals in England due to COVID-19, increasing 30% from the number of patients a week ago and 40% above the highest peak of the virus during its first wave in Spring 2020.

Britain is suffering a rash of new high-profile victims, including 40 footballers and staff in the English Premier League and Armenia's President Armen Sarkisian, who is self-isolating in London after coming down with the virus there.

"We are entirely reconciled to do what it takes to get the virus under control, that may involve tougher measures in the weeks ahead", Johnson told the BBC. More school closures, curfews and the total banning of household mixing could be on the agenda. Unions representing teachers have called for schools to turn to remote learning for at least a couple of weeks more due to the variant, which officials have said is up to 70% more contagious.

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