One in five UK adults have now received Covid vaccine, Matt Hancock says

4 February 2021, 15:47 | Updated: 4 February 2021, 17:15

Matt Hancock said one in five UK adults have now received a Covid vaccine
Matt Hancock said one in five UK adults have now received a Covid vaccine. Picture: PA
Nick Hardinges

By Nick Hardinges

One in five adults in the UK have now received a Covid vaccine, Health Secretary Matt Hancock has announced.

The Cabinet minister said Britain remained on track to hit its target of inoculating the top four priority groups against coronavirus by 15 February.

With the country topping 10 million jabs on Wednesday, plus today's figures, one-fifth of all the UK's adult population has now received a dose of the vaccine.

"We are on track to deliver the commitment we have made of offering the jab to all of the top four priority groups by 15 February," Mr Hancock told reporters while visiting the Royal Marsden Hospital.

"I'm just so proud of the team who are delivering this, it's going really, really well.

"You saw yesterday 10 million jabs done. Today we passed the threshold of one in five of the population who have been jabbed already."

Read more: Sunak 'concerned scientists are moving goalposts' on lifting lockdown

Watch: Nadhim Zahawi tells LBC: We will get to 15m jabs by mid-February target

On Thursday, vaccines minister Nadhim Zahawi told LBC he believes the UK will hit its 15 million first doses objective by 15 February, with just 10 days left to reach the target.

Pointing out that there has only been one day when more than 500,000 doses have been administered since the rollout began, LBC's Nick Ferrari asked: “Can you put your hand on your heart and say you're going to average 500,000 every day for the next 10 days?”

Mr Ferrari highlighted that over the last three days, 374,000, 350,000 and 319,000 doses have been administered.

The vaccines minister replied: “We will get to 15 million – we got to 600,000 I think two Saturdays ago.”

He added: “I am very confident, we’ve got a great team, we’ve got the NHS, GPs, hospitals, vaccination centres, the army, the army of volunteers all working away and I’m confident we’ll hit the target for mid-February.”

Read more: UK 'getting safer every day,' vaccines minister Nadhim Zahawi tells MPs

Read more: London no longer England's hotspot as case rates fall across country

The latest government data up to 3 February shows nearly 11 million jabs have been administered so far. Of those, almost 10.5 million have been first doses - an increase of around 470,000 on the previous day's figures.

A total of 501,957 were second shots, an increase of 2,995 on figures released the previous day.

The UK's seven-day rolling average for first doses is now 430,532.

Based on the latest figures, an average of nearly 410,000 first doses would need to be given each day for the government to meet its target of 15 million by mid-February.

It comes as the UK recorded a further 915 deaths of people who had tested positive for Covid-19 within the previous 28 days.

That brings the nation's tally since the pandemic began to 110,250, though that figure is believed to be north of 127,000.

The government also said there have been another 20,634 lab-confirmed cases of coronavirus in Britain, bringing the total number of cases to 3,892,459.

Meanwhile, the health secretary would not confirm whether details of the government's hotel quarantine plan would be set out next week.

Asked if there would be an announcement, he said: "Of course we're working at pace to further strengthen the measures at the border but we've already put in place for isolation for everybody who arrives, wherever they come from in the world."

Mr Hancock said he discussed the issue with Australian ministers earlier on Thursday because they already have "quarantine hotels".

"We have been working to make sure that we get this right," he said.

The health secretary insisted "there isn't a delay, what there is, is work to make sure that the border is always as secure as it needs to be".

Listen & subscribe: Global Player | Apple Podcasts | Google Podcasts | Spotify