The UK became the first country today (Dec. 8) to use Pfizer and BioNTech’s vaccine to inoculate people against Covid-19.
Britain first approved the vaccine for emergency use on Dec.2. It has purchased 40 million doses, which it says is enough to vaccinate about a third of its population. Here’s guidance from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation, a group of experts that advises UK health departments on vaccines, on the first people to receive the jab:
The UK’s National Health Service (NHS) said the first jab was administered to 90-year-old grandmother Margaret Keenan by her nurse May Parsons at 6.31 am in the city of Coventry. “Early riser Margaret, known to friends and family as Maggie…turns 91 next week,” the NHS wrote in a release, and “is a former jewelry shop assistant who only retired four years ago. She has a daughter, a son and four grandchildren, and is looking forward to being able to go out again once she receives the top up dose.”
Meanwhile, UK prime minister Boris Johnson witnessed some of the first vaccinations being administered in a London hospital. “Today marks a huge step forward in the UK’s fight against coronavirus, as we begin delivering the vaccine to the first patients across the whole country,” he said in a statement last night. “I am immensely proud of the scientists who developed the vaccine, members of the public who took part in trials, and the NHS who have worked tirelessly to prepare for rollout.”