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Will the vaccine be here in time for Christmas? Vaccine Q&A with Dr Amir Khan

With news of vaccine breakthroughs coming thick and fast Dr Amir Khan joined Good Morning Britain to answer questions about when the vaccine could arrive and a timeline for a return to normal life.

Could it be ready in time to allow families to gather at Christmas?

The vaccine is good news and it gives us hope but it will not save Christmas. We're not going to vaccinate enough people to save Christmas. We're looking at spring time to have a normal-ish kind of life.

For the sake of Christmas is it worth risking people's lives? In my opinion I don't think it is. We have to work a little bit harder for a little bit longer so we can have a normal life next year. I don't think we should be easing lockdown for Christmas, it's not worth it.

Does ventilating the room reduce the risk by up to 70%?

The main way of spreading coronavirus is through large respiratory droplets but these drop out of the air quite quickly. We also produce tiny particles that can float in the air and in linger in rooms and if you've got infected particles lingering around other people can breathe them in and get infected.

But by opening windows and doors just a small amount regularly throughout the day you can maintain the heat of your home but also get some of these infected particles out. So yes you can reduce the risk of aerosol spread by up to 70%.

The scale of the immunisation will be enormous won't it?

The vaccine is still going through the saftey process so when it does come we will know the safety information is correct. But yes we are looking at recruiting up to 40,000 people: firefighters, vets, dentists, retired doctors at nurses and others to help us get the vaccine delivered at huge scale.

They are looking at massive arenas, town halls to get this number delivered. It needs to be done but it needs to be done safely. Medics need to be on standby, it's not just a case of giving a jab and moving on.

The pace that it's happening is very quick, when can we expect the first vaccines?

We're hearing two weeks, middle of December but across GP practices we've been getting ourselves ready. We have been working on this for some time in primary care. I've cleared my weekends in December in case it is ready.

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