Covid UK news LIVE – Govt vaccine target to jab vulnerable on track as lockdown could be over for 'great British summer'

THE UK is set to meet its target to vaccinate those who are most vulnerable, as the Government unveiled its plan to escape lockdown by summer.

The 47-page plan, revealed this afternoon, explains how millions of Brits will get the vaccine in the coming weeks and months.

Health secretary Matt Hancock said today: "Vaccines are important and I care about them because I want our country to get back to normal as fast as possible.

"I want us to have that great British summer – my team and I are working fast to deliver this as soon as possible."

The number of daily cases of people who tested positive for coronavirus increased by 46,169 and an additional 32,294 people have been hospitalised with the virus – a 22% increase on this time last week.

The NHS has also revealed it is currently operating at 50% higher patient capacity than it was during the peak of the first covid wave last April.

Follow the very latest news, updates and analysis of the coronavirus crisis in our live blog below.

  • Claudia Aoraha

    SIR DAVID ATTENBOROUGH GETS COVID VACCINE

    Sir David Attenborough has received his Covid-19 vaccination, The Sun can reveal.

    The 94-year-old TV legend had his jab last week, within days of the Queen who is the same age.

    The Perfect Planet star is believed to have had the Oxford vaccine following its roll-out last Monday.

    Last night a source said: "Sir David was always keen to get vaccinated, and support both the current programme and the NHS.

    "Of course, as well as his family and loved ones, millions of animal fans across the globe will be delighted – this is brilliant news."

  • Claudia Aoraha

    UK ECONOMY WILL 'GET WORSE BEFORE IT GETS BETTER' WARNS CHANCELLOR

    Rishi Sunak has warned the UK economy will “get worse before it gets better” as businesses and households endure the latest lockdown measures to try to bring the coronavirus pandemic back under control.

    “Even with the significant economic support we’ve provided, over 800,000 people have lost their job since February,” the chancellor told the House of Commons on Monday.

     

  • Joseph Gamp

    TWO GORILLAS AT SAN DIEGO ZOO TEST POSITIVE FOR CORONAVIRUS

    Two captive gorillas at the San Diego Zoo have tested positive for COVID-19 after falling ill, and a third gorilla appears also to be symptomatic, California Governor Gavin Newsom said on Monday in an online update about the coronavirus pandemic.

    Newsom said the source of infection is still being investigated to determine whether the virus was transmitted between animals or from humans to the apes.

  • Joseph Gamp

    SAINSBURY'S WILL POST TRAINED SECURITY GUARDS AT SHOPS TO 'CHALLENGE' CUSTOMERS NOT WEARING MASKS

    Sainsbury's has confirmed it will post trained security guards at shop entrances to "challenge" any customers not wearing a mask or shopping in groups.

    Chief executive Simon Roberts said: "I've spent a lot of time in our stores reviewing the latest situation over the last few days and on behalf of all my colleagues, I am asking our customers to help us keep everyone safe.

    "The vast majority of customers are shopping safely, but I have also seen some customers trying to shop without a mask and shopping in larger family groups.

    "Please help us to keep all our colleagues and customers safe by always wearing a mask and by shopping alone. Everyone's care and consideration matters now more than ever."

  • Joseph Gamp

    UAE REMOVED FROM UK TRAVEL CORRIDOR LIST

    UAE has been removed from Britain's travel corridor list – meaning travellers will need to self-isolate on their return.

    Bikini-clad influencers will now have to quarantine when they come back from Dubai after it was booted off the nation’s safe list of destinations.

    The middle eastern holiday hotspot, which has rammed full of celebrity influencers like Gabby Allen, Amber Gill and Molly-Mae Hague has seen a spike in cases – which have doubled in a week.

    It was removed from the safe list tonight, meaning passengers returning need to self-isolate for 10 days on their return from Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said: "The LATEST data indicates we need to immediately remove the #UAE from the #TRAVELCORRIDOR list.

    "From 0400 Tuesday 12 Jan anyone arriving from the UAE will need to SELF-ISOLATE."

    Read more here.

  • Joseph Gamp

    RULES IN ENGLAND DURING LOCKDOWN

  • Joseph Gamp

    HANCOCK WARNS NHS UNDER 'SIGNIFICANT PRESSURE', ASKS PUBLIC TO FOLLOW RULES

    Health Secretary Matt Hancock has pleaded with the public to follow coronavirus rules as new figures show nearly 2.3 million people in the UK have had a vaccine jab.

    Mr Hancock said the new variant of coronavirus is "highly contagious and it is putting the NHS under very significant pressure" as he addressed a Downing Street briefing.

    He echoed comments made earlier by England's chief medical officer, Professor Chris Whitty, saying "we're at the worst point in this pandemic".

    And he added: "The NHS, more than ever before, needs everybody to be doing something right now – and that something is to follow the rules. I know there has been speculation about more restrictions, and we don't rule out taking further action if it is needed, but it is your actions now that can make a difference.

    "Stay at home, and please reduce all social contact that is not absolutely strictly necessary. That's what is needed: act like you have the virus."

  • Joseph Gamp

    CUTTING IT FINE

    The two women who were slapped with a £200 fine each for driving five miles to go for a walk in a park have had their penalty notices dropped, it has been reported.

    Last week, Jessica Allen and Eliza Moore told how they were "surrounded by cops" and that the drinks they had with them – two peppermint teas from Starbucks – were classed “as a picnic.”

    Read more here.

  • Joseph Gamp

    GRAPHIC: HOW THE VACCINE WORKS

  • Joseph Gamp

    CORONAVIRUS RECAP: WHAT'S HAPPENED TODAY?

    • Boris Johnson warns he may have to tighten lockdown AGAIN as he reveals 2.4million Covid jabs given out
    • NHS facing ‘worst weeks of Covid’ storm, warns Chris Whitty as he urges Brits to ‘stay at home
    • The truth behind videos of ’empty’ hospitals shared by coronavirus sceptics and anti-lockdown activists
    • Working from home WON’T become the new normal and people will return to offices, Rishi Sunak vows
    • NHS chief reveals a quarter of all Covid patients are under 55 as he urges everyone to take virus ‘extremely seriously’

    BREAKING: UK COVID-19 CASES JUMP BY 46,169 IN 24 HOURS AS DEATHS RISE BY 529

    Coronavirus cases in the UK today jumped by 46,169 as deaths rose by 529 in the last 24 hours.

    There has now been 3,118,518 people infected with the disease in the UK, and the total death toll has reached 81,960.

    Read more here.

    WATCH: MATT HANCOCK TRIES TO CLARIFY LOCKDOWN RULES ON PARK WALKS AND EXERCISE

     

    MAPPED: ENGLAND'S MASS VACCINATION CENTRES REVEALED

    HANCOCK: SUPPORT BUBBLES WILL REMAIN

    "I know how important they are to people, and they are an important part of the system we have go to support people," Hancock said during the press conference.

    "The bubbles are there for individual specific people…if there is someone in your bubble, you are essentially part of the same household."

    HANCOCK APPLAUDS SUPERMARKET CHAIN FOR ENFORCING WEARING OF FACE MASK

    The health secretary applauded supermarket chain Morrisons' decision to enforce the wearing of masks by its customers, unless they have a medical reason.

    He added: "I want to see all parts of society playing their part in this."

    • Joseph Gamp

      HANCOCK: WE WILL TIGHTEN RULES IF NECESSARY

      Mr Hancock says: "We keep these things under review and we have demonstrated that we're willing to tighten the rules if they need to be tightened.

      "But the thing that really matters right here, right now is that everybody follows the rules as they are today.

      "And everybody can play their part in doing that."

    • Joseph Gamp

      HALF A MILLION LAPTOPS BEING DELIVERED TO SUPPORT PUPILS LEARNING AT HOME

      Asked about support for pupils learning from home Mr Hancock said: "My colleague, Gavin Williamson, the Education Secretary, is sending out over half a million laptops, and making sure, as much as is possible, that those laptops get to the people who need them."

    • Joseph Gamp

      HANCOCK: I'M CONFIDENT FOUR PRIORITY GROUPS WILL RECEIVE VACCINE BY MID FEBRUARY DEADLINE

      Matt Hancock said he was "confident" that the first four priority groups would receive their coronavirus vaccine by the middle of next month.

      The Health Secretary said: "We are on track to meet that target – it's not going to be easy, but we are going to get there."

      Professor Stephen Powis said he too was confident that the target would be met.

    • Joseph Gamp

      NOW 13,000 MORE COVID HOSPITAL ADMISSIONS THAN ON XMAS DAY

      There are now 13,000 more Covid-19 patients in hospital than there were on Christmas Day, the National Medical Director for England has said.

      Professor Stephen Powis said: "Less than a fortnight into 2021 the number of people in hospital with Covid has already gone up by a third, a rise of around 8,000."

      He said that infection and death rates remain "stubbornly high" with hospitals under "significant and sustained" pressure.

      He said that even the South West has more people in hospital now than the entire country combined did at the end of September, and the country has still not seen the full impact of the Christmas loosening of restrictions.

      He urged everyone to stick to the rules and "keep focus and resilience" as a country.

    • Joseph Gamp

      A 'SPRINT AND MARATHON' BEFORE OTHER AGE GROUPS RECEIVE VACCINE BY AUTUMN – PROFESSOR POWIS

      The National Medical Director for England has said that seven vaccination hubs and more than 1,000 pharmacies are gearing up to start delivering Covid-19 jabs.

      Speaking at the Downing Street press briefing, Professor Stephen Powis said that 1,200 pharmacies in England alone will join the vaccination roll-out.

      "We will then kick off another sprint up to April as we get the rest of the vulnerable groups protected and finally a marathon to the autumn as we deliver vaccination to everyone else," he said.

      He added that, apart from social distancing and Covid-19 safety measures, "these vaccines are the best line of defence that we have as we continue this battle against coronavirus".

    • Joseph Gamp

      HANCOCK: DO NOT TRY AND FLEX THE RULES

      Mr Hancock said if people do not take the rules seriously and try and "flex them" it will lead to more deaths.

      However, he says he believes that most people are following the rules.

    • Joseph Gamp

      POWIS: 'EXTREMELY SERIOUS MOMENT' FOR THE COUNTRY

      Stephen Powis has said the current wave is an "extremely serious moment for the country".

      The NHS England director said: "We're seeing stubbornly high levels of infection, and unfortunately death to, which is the sadly inevitable consequence of the rapid spread of the virus in recent weeks."

      "Hospitals throughout the country and are seeing significant and sustained pressure from those rising numbers of Covid-19 patients – even the Southwest has more people in hospital now than the entire country combined it at the end of September."

    • Joseph Gamp

      MATT HANCOCK PLAYS DOWN RUMOURS OF FURTHER RESTRICTIONS

      He tells the Downing Street press conference: "The NHS, more than ever before, needs everybody to be doing something right now – and that something is to follow the rules.

      "I know there has been speculation about more restrictions, and we don't rule out taking further action if it is needed, but it is your actions now that can make a difference.

      "Stay at home, and please reduce all social contact that is not absolutely strictly necessary. That's what is needed: act like you have the virus."

    • Joseph Gamp

      HANCOCK: GOVERNMENT WORKING HARD TO DELIVER VACCINE AS FAST AS POSSIBLE

      The health secretary says he wants the country to have "that great British summer", and is working as fast as he can to deliver the vaccine.

      He reveals the NHS has administered 2.6 million doses of the vaccine to 2.3 million people to date.

      He added: "We have protected more people through vaccinations than all the other countries in Europe put together."

    • Joseph Gamp

      HEALTH SECRETARY GIVES LATEST FIGURES

      As of 9am on Monday, there had been a further 46,169 lab-confirmed cases of coronavirus in the UK.

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