MILLIONS of Brits have now been vaccinated against Covid-19 with hundreds of thousands of people getting the jab each day.
So far 18.2 million Brits have received their first dose of either the Oxford/AstraZeneca jab or the Pfizer/BioNTech offering and over 660,000 have received their second.
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The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) have devised a list that puts the most vulnerable at the top.
Those at the top of the list include the elderly, care workers and those who are most at risk from developing severe complications from Covid-19.
But there are some people who don't fall into the above who will be on the priority list because of a variety of health conditions.
Earlier this month the government hit its target of vaccinating 15million Brits by February 17 – two days earlier than the original target.
Now they have pledged to jab everyone over the age of 50 by April 15.
Most people under the age of 50 will have to wait longer for their jab but some will get the jab early due to underlying health conditions.
Towie star James Argent was this week reported to have had the Covid vaccine as his weight puts him in the "at risk category".
AM I IN THE PRIORITY GROUP?
The NHS states that there are three ways you may be identified as clinically extremely vulnerable.
If you have been told to shield by your GP or you have been identified but the Covid-19 Population Risk Assessment tool then you will be on the list.
You will also be on the list if you have any of the below:
- you've had an organ transplant
- you're having chemotherapy or antibody treatment for cancer, including immunotherapy
- you're having an intense course of radiotherapy (radical radiotherapy) for lung cancer
- you're having targeted cancer treatments that can affect the immune system (such as protein kinase inhibitors or PARP inhibitors)
- you have blood or bone marrow cancer (such as leukaemia, lymphoma or myeloma)
- you've had a bone marrow or stem cell transplant in the past 6 months, or are still taking immunosuppressant medicine
- you've been told by a doctor you have a severe lung condition (such as cystic fibrosis, severe asthma or severe COPD)
- you have a condition that means you have a very high risk of getting infections (such as SCID or sickle cell)
- you're taking medicine that makes you much more likely to get infections (such as high doses of steroids or immunosuppressant medicine)
- you have a serious heart condition and are pregnant
- you have a problem with your spleen or your spleen has been removed (splenectomy)
- you're an adult with Down's syndrome
- you're an adult who is having dialysis or has severe (stage 5) long-term kidney disease
AM I ELIGIBLE?
The vaccine roll out last week moved onto the next phase, with over-65s and younger people with underlying health conditions in England being offered the vaccine.
A BMI of 40 or above and severe asthma make patients eligible for a vaccine.
Before the new deadline of April 15 there are nine priority groups that will need to be vaccinated and that includes clinically extremely vulnerable people.
People in this group include those who are receiving treatment for cancer.
While vaccines are being rolled out across the country many Brits have become concerned about who is in the priority groups.
Radio presenter Jo Whiley voiced her concern after she was offered the jab before her sister who lives in a care home.
The presenter launched a campaign to get those with learning disabilities added to the priority list.
Government advisers urged GPs to invite 150,000 extra people after research revealed they were at higher risk of death.
The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) had already said people with severe and profound learning disabilities are part of group six – all adults aged 16-64 with underlying health conditions.
It meant adults with less severe learning disabilities are not currently prioritised.
But the JCVI is now advising the NHS to invite all people on the GP Learning Disability Register for their jab, regardless of how severe their disability is.
Recent analysis for the JCVI showed a higher risk of mortality and morbidity in those on the GP register with the most severe learning disabilities.
The JCVI is also calling for the NHS to work with local authorities to identify adults in residential and nursing care, and those who require support in the community, who may not be registered.
The government states that there are several conditions that could place you in priority group six.
These include people who have blood cancer, diabetes, dementia or a heart problem.
Covid-19 is a virus tht attacks the lungs and because of that people in group six also include those who have conditions such as severe asthma.
Other health conditions on the list include kidney or liver disease, people with low immunity and those with rheumatoid arthritis.
If you suffer from severe mental health issues, have a BMI of over 40 and have had an organ transplant then you will also be in this group.
It's not yet clear who will be next on the list once the most at risk have been jabbed.
The JCVI has not yet announced how phase 2 will be rolled out.
The government previously stated that every adult over the age of 16 will have been offered a jab by July 31.
However jab take up has slowed in recent days but experts claim this is down to supply.
Prof Jonathan Van-Tam said he was “confident” that doses will continue coming into the UK after a recent slump in vaccination rates.
Speaking to Sky News this week he said: “Am I confident in the long term that we are absolutely going to be able to reach our ambitions through vaccine apply? Yes, I am.
“Do I think this slow down is going to suddenly pick up again? Yes, I do.”
Official figures show the average number of doses given in a day has dropped by 25 per cent in one week.
On February 12, the seven-day vaccination rate of first doses was 418,517, which had dropped to 334,296 on February 19.
Looking at individual days, 192,341 doses were given on Tuesday – a drop of 43 per cent compared to the Tuesday the week prior, when 275,956 first doses were given.
At the same time, the number of second doses being given has increased.
It comes after the Health Secretary Matt Hancock told LBC this week to expect "a quieter week this week” for vaccine supply.
But he added “we’re going to have some really bumper weeks in March”.
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