Covid vaccine: More than 30 million people - 57% of adults - in UK have received first dose

  • Video report by ITV News Correspondent Lucy Watson

More than 30 million people in the UK have received their first dose of the coronavirus vaccine - that is 57% of all UK adults.

The Department of Health and Social Care said it is on track to achieve the government’s target of offering all over-50s and the clinically vulnerable their first vaccine by April 15.

And culture secretary Oliver Dowden has said he can guarantee everyone will get a second dose of the vaccine within 12 weeks of their first after doubts were raised by French foreign minister Jean-Yves Le Drian.

A total of 30,151,287 people have received their first jabs, the Department of Health and Social Care announced on Sunday.

ITV Granada Political Correspondent Hannah Miller on the vaccine rollout

And 3,527,481 people – 6% of the adult population in the UK – have had their second doses.

Questioned about concerns over the vaccine supply, Mr Dowden told the BBC the UK was on track with the rollout as the government had been prepared for the "ups and downs".

He said: "We were surging ahead a couple of weeks ago, there's been a bit of a slow-down now.

"But that doesn't undermine our confidence that we will be able to deliver for that crucial group, the over-50s, by the middle of April and then for the rest of the adult population by the end of July."

Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden has said the plans "concern" him. Credit: Yui Mok/PA

Asked about whether there were enough second doses for everyone, he said: "That is absolutely essential and in all our planning throughout this, we have borne in mind that we have to get that second top-up and so we're confident we will be able to deliver it."

He said the government was confident all adults will be able to get their second dose within 12 weeks of their first dose without resorting to mixing the different vaccines.

Mr Dowden's comments come after France's foreign minister Le Drian told France Info radio that the UK is now "a bit handicapped" with the second vaccine doses after it "hurried" to get people vaccinated with the first shot.

Vaccine supplies in the UK have been affected by issues in India. There has been a hold-up in the export of AstraZeneca vaccines, made by the Serum Institute of India.

The UK has ordered 100 million doses of the vaccine developed by Swedish-British drugmaker in partnership with the University of Oxford.

The majority of these vaccines will be made in the UK. About 10 million of the doses are being made by the Serum Institute of India, one of the biggest manufacturers of the AstraZeneca vaccine mainly supplying to India and low and middle-income countries.

In addition, there is an ongoing row with the European Union over vaccine exports.

The UK expects to receive its first shipment of the Moderna Covid vaccine next month.

As England's lockdown restrictions ease further, the nation has been warned not to “squander the gains” made against coronavirus.

From Monday, groups of six people, or two households, can socialise outdoors as the stay-at-home order ends in England.