The UK will have to roll out more than two million coronavirus vaccines a week to meet its target of offering a jab to the top four priority groups by the middle of February, a minister has acknowledged.

Vaccines minister Nadhim Zahawi told Sky News that the target, which involves inoculating 13.9 million people against COVID-19, was a “Herculean effort”.

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“It is a stretching target no doubt, but I’m confident that with this plan that the NHS have put together that we will deliver this,” he said.

Mr Zahawi said of the 1.3 million doses administered so far, a quarter have gone to those over the age of 80.

Asked if the UK would need to be offering more than two million doses a week, a figure the government has previously said the NHS has the capacity to deliver, Mr Zahawi replied: “Absolutely, you’re going to see that increase.

“The NHS have got a very clear plan. We’ve got a fantastic team working seven days a week all hours to deliver this.

“As I said, I think it’s a stretching target, no doubt it’s a stretching target, but I think it’s one that we should absolutely look to deliver.”

Politics

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