London, June 16 (MNN) More than 30 million people in the UK have received a second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, the latest figures showed.
The Department of Health and Social Care said that more than 79 per cent of eligible UK citizens have been vaccinated with a single dose till date — 41,830,546 people given their first dose (79.4 per cent), and 30,204,738 people with both doses (57.3 per cent).
The public was also urged to come forward for their second dose to help protect against the threat of new variants.
New analysis by Public Health England (PHE) shows for the first time that two doses of COVID-19 vaccines are highly effective against hospitalisation from the Delta (B.1.61.2) variant.
The analysis suggests the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine is 96 per cent effective and the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine 92 per cent effective against hospitalisation after both doses.
The government met its target of offering a vaccine to the most vulnerable by April 15 and is on track to offer a first dose to all adults by July 19, two weeks earlier than planned.
NHS England on Tuesday extended the offer of a vaccine to everyone over the age of 23.
By July 19, all those aged 50 and over and the clinically extremely vulnerable will have been offered their second dose.
Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock said: “Second doses are increasingly vital, so this is an incredibly important milestone. Day after day, our vaccination programme reaches new heights. With over 30 million people across the UK now receiving a second dose, we are giving the fullest possible protection to our loved ones in the face of new variants.”
Vaccinated people are far less likely to get COVID-19 with symptoms. Vaccinated people are even more unlikely to get serious COVID-19, to be admitted to hospital, or to die from it and there is growing evidence that they are less likely to pass the virus to others.
Data from PHE’s real-world study shows the vaccines are already having a significant impact in the UK, reducing hospitalisations and deaths, saving 14,000 lives and preventing 42,000 hospitalisations in England.
Data published by YouGov shows the UK continues to top the list of nations where people are willing to have a COVID-19 vaccine or have already been vaccinated.