The UK is to set up twenty-four-hour vaccination centres in a desperate effort to inoculate 14 million people by mid-February.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced the ambitious targets on Wednesday as the former EU member-country hit its highest daily toll of 1,564 deaths.
Mr. Johnson told the House of Commons the vaccination centre roll-out would happen as soon as possible, but he said limits on supply were delaying plans.
“…We have a huge network — 233 hospitals, 5000 GP surgeries, 200 pharmacies and 50 mass vaccination centres — and they are going exceptionally fast…” he said.
“It’s thanks to the work of the NHS and to the vaccine taskforce that we have secured more doses per capita than virtually any other country in the world, certainly more than any other country in Europe,” the PM added.
The UK plans to vaccinate four high-priority groups, totalling 14 million people, by February 15, but with only 2.6 million people vaccinated since the program began on December 8, the Government will need more than 2 million vaccinations a week to hit its target.
Britain is currently rolling out two vaccines, one from Pfizer and the other from AstraZeneca, and on Wednesday AstraZeneca’s UK President Tom Keith-Roach told parliamentarians he hoped to be able to expand supply beyond 2 million doses a week as processes were optimised.
Wednesday’s record death toll in the UK came with an additional 47,525 new COVID-19 cases.
There is debate over plans to delay the second vaccine jab in order to reach more people across the country.