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UK Coronavirus LIVE: Pfizer Covid vaccine approved for roll-out next week as new tiers come into force

Live updates

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Professor Lim says he hopes 90 to 99% of people who are at risk of dying from Covid will be covered by the first phase of the vaccine rollout

“We have a vaccine that is acceptably safe and effective,” said Professor Lim.

“Good vaccine up-take will save lives.”

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Professor Lim says UK has one of the best immunisation programmes in the world

Professor Wei Shen Lim, chairman of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation, said: “We are suggesting that vaccines are offered in order to protect people who are most at risk from dying of Covid-19 as well as to protect NHS and social workers.

“Age is by far the most single important factor in terms of risk for Covid-19.”

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MHRA scientists will undertake “surveillance” following the use of the vaccines in the population

Professor Pirmohamed said: “We had visits from NHS colleagues to tell us what their deployment strategy was.

“It’s important that we undertake surveillance following the use of vaccines in the population.”

He added that no testing is required before people take the vaccine.

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MHRA had “unprecedented access to raw data” said Professor Sir Munir Pirmohamed

Professor Pirmohamed told the briefing that the scientists looked at the risk benefit analysis for every compound that came through.

( Sky News )
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MHRA teams worked around the clock

Dr June Raine said: “Separate teams have been working in parallel to deliver the most rigorous review of this vaccine.”

She added that experts had been “carefully, methodically pouring over tables, analyses and graphs”.

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No corners have been cut, says Dr June Raine from MHRA

Dr June Raine told the briefing that the assessment had been carried out through the process of a “rolling review”.

“That doesn’t mean that any corners have been cut – none at all,” she said.

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Dr June Raine starts this morning briefing

Dr June Raine, head of regulator Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) said the safety of the public will always come first.

She said the announcement came after the MHRA carried out “the most rigorous, scientific assessment of every piece of data”.

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WHO director says UK is first country to authorise the Pfizer/BionTech vaccine

Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus tweeted: “The [UK] is the first country to authorize the Pfizer/BionTech #COVID19 vaccine for emergency use and expects to start rolling it out as soon as next week.”

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Will I have the coronavirus vaccine? What the Pfizer announcement means for the UK

The UK has ordered 40 million doses of the vaccine, enough to vaccinate 20m people with two doses, given 21 days apart.

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Health Secretary speaks about loss of family member to virus

Speaking about the loss of a family member to Covid-19, Health Secretary Matt Hancock told ITV’s Good Morning Britain: “Derek was my stepsister’s stepfather.

“I have a complicated, messy and loving family and we’re one big extended family really.

“Sadly, he caught coronavirus in November and then he passed away and it’s just awful.

“He was in his 70s and it just shows how important it is that we keep this thing under control, and it shows to everybody how important it is we can get through it.

“And the irony was that Liverpool, thankfully, has really got this under control, but in that period when the infection was going round, he caught it and he died and it shows that it can affect all of us.”

Source: Evening Standard Business News

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