NHS ready to roll out covid jab from next month with tens of thousands of people being vaccinated daily by Christmas
THE NHS is gearing up for a major roll out of a Covid jab from next month – with five mass vaccination centres ready before Christmas.
The giant sites – manned by trainee nurses, physios and paramedics – will be able to treat tens of thousands of people daily.
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Leaked documents reveal officials are hopeful that two jabs will prove successful before the end of the year.
Plans are already well under way to ensure they can be delivered to those who need them most.
The first mass vaccination centres are planned for sites in major cities including Leeds, Hull and London.
They will be supported by hundreds of mobile vaccination units dotted nationwide, while roving teams will visit care homes and vulnerable Brits.
GPs and pharmacists will also be asked to dole out the jab to millions of people – with roll out set to take between three to six months.
One of the vaccine frontrunners includes the treatment developed by Oxford University, with millions of doses already stockpiled.
But with patients needing two jabs, 28 days apart, inoculating vast numbers of Brits is set to be a logistical nightmare.
A health source said: “The earliest we are likely to get the first trial results is in a month’s time – which means the best case scenario for a potential roll out is just before Christmas.
“But planning is well under way, so there will be no delay in vaccination once we have a working jab.”
It comes as World Health Organisation boss Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus confirmed a coronavirus jab is on the horizon.
There is hope that by the end of this year we may have a vaccine.
He said: "There is hope that by the end of this year we may have a vaccine. There is hope."
Leaked provisional plans asked NHS teams to be ready from late October for mass vaccination. But with no treatment yet ready, the timings have been pushed back.
Officials also aim to change the rules to allow a much wider group of health workers to give Covid jabs – including dietitians, chiropodists and vets.
The army will also be called in to help out with any national roll out.
UK vaccine taskforce boss Kate Bingham this week suggested only half of the UK would get any successful jab.
But ministers have distanced themselves from her comments. Matt Hancock said any decision on how many Brits were vaccinated would only be made once a working jab is found.
The Health Secretary said the Government plans to follow the advice of the joint committee on vaccination and immunisation (JCVI).
Its interim guidance said care home residents and those working in the sector would be among the first to be treated.
Then over 80s and NHS staff would be next, followed by younger OAPs and high-risk Brits.
The JCVI said the "prioritisation could change substantially if the first available vaccines were not considered suitable for, or effective in, older adults".
A Government spokesperson said: “The Government will do everything needed to roll out a successful vaccine quickly and safely.
“An enormous amount of planning and preparation has already taken place including ensuring we have adequate provision, transport, PPE and logistical expertise.
“We are working closely with the NHS and we will use the military in the planning of logistics as necessary, as they have already gone to great lengths to successfully support our operational efforts.”
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