The rollout of the Covid-19 vaccine will be ‘the largest scale immunisation programme in UK history’, according to a top health boss.

The NHS is working through the weekend to prepare for the first coronavirus vaccines arriving at hospitals on Monday.

Health secretary Matt Hancock said the coming week would be a ‘historic moment’, as the first jabs are set to be administrated on Tuesday.

People aged 80 and over, care home workers and NHS workers who are at higher risk will be the first group to get the jab. 

There is still no guaranteed date for when care home residents will be vaccinated, despite them being at the top of the priority list, with Health Secretary Matt Hancock saying there are still ‘significant challenges’ to overcome.



The vaccine rollout has been named ‘one of the greatest challenges the NHS has ever faced’.

NHS medical director Professor Stephen Powis said: ‘Despite the huge complexities, hospitals will kickstart the first phase of the largest scale vaccination campaign in our country’s history from Tuesday.

‘The first tranche of vaccine deliveries will be landing at hospitals by Monday in readiness.

‘The NHS has a strong record of delivering large scale vaccination programmes – from the flu jab, HPV vaccine and lifesaving MMR jabs – hardworking staff will once again rise to the challenge to protect the most vulnerable people from this awful disease.’

Mr Hancock said: ‘This coming week will be an historic moment as we begin vaccination against Covid-19.

‘We are prioritising the most vulnerable first, and over-80s, care home staff and NHS colleagues will all be among the first to receive the vaccines.

‘We are doing everything we can to make sure we can overcome significant challenges to vaccinate care home residents as soon as possible too.

‘I urge everybody to play their part to suppress this virus and follow the local restrictions to protect the NHS while they carry out this crucial work.’

The first 50 hospital hubs to get the coronavirus vaccine

Mid and South Essex NHS Foundation Trust

Milton Keynes University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

East Suffolk And North Essex NHS Foundation Trust

North West Anglia NHS Foundation Trust

James Paget University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Norfolk And Norwich University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Cambridge University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

East and North Hertfordshire NHS Trust

Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust

Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust

Croydon Health Services NHS Trust

St George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust – Denmark Hill

King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust – Princess Royal University Hospital

Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust

Chesterfield Royal Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

Sherwood Forest Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

University Hospitals Coventry And Warwickshire NHS Trust

Royal Stoke Hospital

Northampton General Hospital NHS Trust

University Hospitals of Derby and Burton NHS Foundation Trust

United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust

Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust

Shrewsbury And Telford Hospital NHS Trust

Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

North Cumbria Integrated Care NHS Foundation Trust

Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust

The Newcastle Upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust

South Tees NHS Trust

Wirral University Teaching Hospital

Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Countess of Chester Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust

Stockport NHS Foundation Trust

Blackpool Teaching Hospital

Lancashire Teaching Hospital Trust

Frimley Health NHS Foundation Trust – Wexham Park Hospital

Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

East Kent Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust – William Harvey Hospital

Brighton And Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust – Royal Sussex County Hospital

Portsmouth University Hospitals Trust

Royal Surrey NHS Foundation Trust

Yeovil District Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

Dorset County Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust

University Hospitals Plymouth NHS Trust

Great Western Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

North Bristol NHS Trust

The Pfizer/BioNtech vaccine has to be stored at -70C before being thawed out and can only be moved four times within that cold chain before being used.

Public Health England said it has secured 58 specialised Twin Guard ultra-low temperature freezers which can store about five million doses.

There are 50 vaccination hubs in England’s first wave of the programme with more hospitals to vaccinate over the coming weeks and months.

A Downing Street spokeswoman said the Government has been ‘working day and night to battle against coronavirus, taking the right steps at the right time to deliver a strategy to protect our NHS and save lives and livelihoods’.

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