Dialysis patient Brian Pinker becomes first person to receive Oxford-AstraZeneca Covid vaccine

Brian Pinker, 82, said he was proud the vaccine was invented in Oxford. Credit: PA

Dialysis patient Brian Pinker has become the first person to be vaccinated with the new Oxford/AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine after being given the jab at Oxford University Hospital, NHS England said.

The 82-year-old, who describes himself as Oxford born and bred, said receiving the jab "means everything to me".

He added: "To my mind, it's the only way to getting back to a normal life."

Mr Pinker, who has been having dialysis for kidney disease at the hospital for a number of years, was pleased to be getting protection against coronavirus.

He said the jab will give him peace of mind as he continues to receive treatment, and he is now looking forward to celebrating his 48th wedding anniversary in February.

“I am so pleased to be getting the Covid vaccine today and really proud that it is one that was invented in Oxford,” Mr Pinker said.

Mr Pinker said: "The nurses, doctors and staff today have all been brilliant and I can now really look forward to celebrating my 48th wedding anniversary with my wife Shirley later this year.

"The vaccine means everything to me, it’s the only way I’ll be getting back to normal life. This virus is terrible, isn’t it?

"They should (get vaccinated). I mean it’s a no-brainer. They need to come, don’t they?

"I’m very pleased that I’ve got the Oxford vaccine, very pleased. I was a bit daunted by it, really. It took me long enough to be a star, didn’t it?"

Sam Foster, Chief Nursing Officer at Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, who administered the vaccine to Mr Pinker, said: “It was a real privilege to be able to deliver the first Oxford vaccine at the Churchill Hospital here in Oxford, just a few hundred metres from where it was developed.

“We look forward to vaccinating many more patients and health and care staff with the Oxford vaccine in the coming weeks which will make a huge difference to people living in the communities we serve and the staff who care for them in our hospitals.”

Health Secretary Matt Hancock hailed the beginning of the rollout as "a pivotal moment in our fight against this awful virus", adding he hopes "it provides renewed hope to everybody that the end of this pandemic is in sight".

The Tory MP urged everyone to continue to follow the coronavirus restrictions while the vaccination programme is under way to “keep cases down and protect our loved ones”.