COVID-19 vaccine rollout for those aged under 50 in England will be delayed by a month, NHS bosses have announced.
As reported by Sky News and the BBC, NHS England wrote to healthcare leaders in a letter, stating that, “the government’s vaccines task force have now notified us that there will be a significant reduction in weekly supply available from manufacturers beginning in the week commencing 29 March”.
As a result, healthcare workers have been told not to schedule vaccine appointments for those under 50 in the month of April.
In a press briefing on Wednesday, Health Secretary Matt Hancock initially claimed that the vaccine rollout was on target, saying that it would focus on vaccinating vulnerable people who are still yet to receive a jab, before moving onto those in their forties.
Hancock later clarified, in response to a question from the BBC’s Laura Kuenssberg, that “vaccine supply is always lumpy,” and that the letter sent by NHS England was “standard.”
He said: “We regularly send out technical letters to the NHS to explain the ups and downs of the supply over the future weeks, and what you're referring to is a standard one of those letters.”
Over 25 million people in the UK have received the first dose of the vaccine.