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COVID-19: People in their 40s first for phase two of vaccine rollout

Written by on 26 February 2021

The next phase of COVID vaccinations will continue to prioritise people by age and not their occupation to avoid slowing down the rollout.

People aged 40-49 will be the next in line to get a vaccine after all vulnerable groups and the over-50s are covered, the government said.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) said this would provide “the greatest benefit in the shortest time”.

It added that prioritising occupational groups such as teachers and police could make the rollout more complex and could potentially slow the programme overall, leaving some vulnerable people at higher risk for longer.

Live COVID updates from the UK and around the world

In a statement, a government spokesperson confirmed all four nations of the UK would follow the recommendations “subject to the final advice given by the independent expert committee”.

The spokesperson added that age had been assessed to be “the strongest factor linked to mortality, morbidity and hospitalisations, and because the speed of delivery is crucial as we provide more people with protection from COVID-19”.

Therefore, the priority ordering for phase two will be:

  • Everyone aged between 40 and 49
  • Everyone aged between 30 and 39
  • Everyone aged between 18 and 29

It will begin after all nine priority groups and the over-50s have been offered the jab.

Professor Wei Shen Lim, the COVID-19 chair for JCVI, said age “remains a dominant factor” and that making this a priority would also make the programme more “simple”.

He added: “Simplicity has been a cornerstone in terms of speed and success.

“An occupation-based vaccination programme has never been tested; trying to switch will be more complex and potentially introduce more delays into the programme.

“The vaccination programme is a huge success and continuing the age-based rollout will provide the greatest benefit in the shortest time, including to those in occupations at a higher risk of exposure.”

Subscribe to the Daily podcast on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Spreaker

Earlier this week, Metropolitan Police Commissioner Dame Cressida Dick said she felt “extremely disappointed” that police officers hadn’t been prioritised in the programme.

She pointed out that 147 of her colleagues in London alone had been coughed at, while another 51 had been spat at by people claiming to have COVID-19.

Speaking for her colleagues, she added: “They are at a particular risk because of the way in which they are so often going from house to house, in people’s personal space, dealing with people who are spitting… this is a many times a day occurrence for my people.

“And inevitably they are concerned that they may take that home, or that they may be spreading as well.”

Currently, people in group five of the priority groups – anyone aged 65 and over – are being vaccinated.

Some areas have also moved on to group six – adults aged 16 to 64 with underlying health conditions.

A further 600,000 people who were identified last week as being at additional risk from COVID-19 were on Thursday invited to book a slot at a vaccination centre or pharmacy.

Commenting on the government’s rollout decision, Jonathan Ball, a professor of molecular virology at University of Nottingham, acknowledged that while it was a “reasonable viewpoint” to prioritise people at risk of infection, it “makes sense” to continue prioritising those most at-risk.

He added: “Hopefully we will still see strong vaccine uptake in those groups less likely to suffer from serious disease, as that will help us towards herd immunity and a future free from large numbers of cases of COVID-19.”

Recently, the number of jabs administered has slowed, but Boris Johnson has maintains that all adults in the UK should be offered their first vaccination by 31 July.

He said everyone over 50 should get their offer by 15 April.

On Friday, the government spokesperson said the the UK “remained on course” to meet these targets.

Analysis: Too risky to start mass immunisation by profession in the middle of a pandemic

By Ashish Joshi, health correspondent

Keep it simple. Keep it quick. That’s the government’s vaccination strategy. It’s worked so far and there is, as far as the JCVI is concerned, no reason to change it now.

They want as many people vaccinated as soon as possible and the easiest way to do that is to target sections of the population according to age.

By trying to break it down into occupations risks slowing down this monumental effort and undoing all the good work so far.

The mission, right from the very start, is to stop people dying, to stop people becoming very sick and to stop people needed hospital treatment.

The data, say the government’s scientists, tells us that is happening. They argue that to move from target age groups to high-risk occupations is too complicated.

And we know that age and underlying health conditions are the two most important factors. The older the patient then the higher the risk from COVID-19. That’s why phase one of the rollout targeted the over-50s and the most clinically vulnerable. The next phase will be those aged 40-49.

Another argument is that by hitting this age group you also take in public workers like teachers and police officers who are most at risk by age.

The next phase will start as soon as the first one is over. But significant concerns remain about low vaccine take-up in certain communities like black and Asian; travellers; and Eastern European. The reasons are varied and complex but that is the challenge for public health workers to engage more with these groups and ensure access and counter the misinformation that exists.

This country has never undertaken a mass immunisation programme according to profession. It is too risky to start one in the middle of a deadly pandemic.

Source


COVID-19: People in their 40s first for phase two of vaccine rollout

Written by on 26 February 2021

The next phase of COVID vaccinations will continue to prioritise people by age and not their occupation to avoid slowing down the rollout.

People aged 40-49 will be the next in line to get a vaccine after all vulnerable groups and the over-50s are covered, the government said.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) said this would provide “the greatest benefit in the shortest time”.

It added that prioritising occupational groups such as teachers and police could make the rollout more complex and could potentially slow the programme overall, leaving some vulnerable people at higher risk for longer.

Live COVID updates from the UK and around the world

In a statement, a government spokesperson confirmed all four nations of the UK would follow the recommendations “subject to the final advice given by the independent expert committee”.

The spokesperson added that age had been assessed to be “the strongest factor linked to mortality, morbidity and hospitalisations, and because the speed of delivery is crucial as we provide more people with protection from COVID-19”.

Therefore, the priority ordering for phase two will be:

  • Everyone aged between 40 and 49
  • Everyone aged between 30 and 39
  • Everyone aged between 18 and 29

It will begin after all nine priority groups and the over-50s have been offered the jab.

Professor Wei Shen Lim, the COVID-19 chair for JCVI, said age “remains a dominant factor” and that making this a priority would also make the programme more “simple”.

He added: “Simplicity has been a cornerstone in terms of speed and success.

“An occupation-based vaccination programme has never been tested; trying to switch will be more complex and potentially introduce more delays into the programme.

“The vaccination programme is a huge success and continuing the age-based rollout will provide the greatest benefit in the shortest time, including to those in occupations at a higher risk of exposure.”

Subscribe to the Daily podcast on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Spreaker

Earlier this week, Metropolitan Police Commissioner Dame Cressida Dick said she felt “extremely disappointed” that police officers hadn’t been prioritised in the programme.

She pointed out that 147 of her colleagues in London alone had been coughed at, while another 51 had been spat at by people claiming to have COVID-19.

Speaking for her colleagues, she added: “They are at a particular risk because of the way in which they are so often going from house to house, in people’s personal space, dealing with people who are spitting… this is a many times a day occurrence for my people.

“And inevitably they are concerned that they may take that home, or that they may be spreading as well.”

Currently, people in group five of the priority groups – anyone aged 65 and over – are being vaccinated.

Some areas have also moved on to group six – adults aged 16 to 64 with underlying health conditions.

A further 600,000 people who were identified last week as being at additional risk from COVID-19 were on Thursday invited to book a slot at a vaccination centre or pharmacy.

Commenting on the government’s rollout decision, Jonathan Ball, a professor of molecular virology at University of Nottingham, acknowledged that while it was a “reasonable viewpoint” to prioritise people at risk of infection, it “makes sense” to continue prioritising those most at-risk.

He added: “Hopefully we will still see strong vaccine uptake in those groups less likely to suffer from serious disease, as that will help us towards herd immunity and a future free from large numbers of cases of COVID-19.”

Recently, the number of jabs administered has slowed, but Boris Johnson has maintains that all adults in the UK should be offered their first vaccination by 31 July.

He said everyone over 50 should get their offer by 15 April.

On Friday, the government spokesperson said the the UK “remained on course” to meet these targets.

Analysis: Too risky to start mass immunisation by profession in the middle of a pandemic

By Ashish Joshi, health correspondent

Keep it simple. Keep it quick. That’s the government’s vaccination strategy. It’s worked so far and there is, as far as the JCVI is concerned, no reason to change it now.

They want as many people vaccinated as soon as possible and the easiest way to do that is to target sections of the population according to age.

By trying to break it down into occupations risks slowing down this monumental effort and undoing all the good work so far.

The mission, right from the very start, is to stop people dying, to stop people becoming very sick and to stop people needed hospital treatment.

The data, say the government’s scientists, tells us that is happening. They argue that to move from target age groups to high-risk occupations is too complicated.

And we know that age and underlying health conditions are the two most important factors. The older the patient then the higher the risk from COVID-19. That’s why phase one of the rollout targeted the over-50s and the most clinically vulnerable. The next phase will be those aged 40-49.

Another argument is that by hitting this age group you also take in public workers like teachers and police officers who are most at risk by age.

The next phase will start as soon as the first one is over. But significant concerns remain about low vaccine take-up in certain communities like black and Asian; travellers; and Eastern European. The reasons are varied and complex but that is the challenge for public health workers to engage more with these groups and ensure access and counter the misinformation that exists.

This country has never undertaken a mass immunisation programme according to profession. It is too risky to start one in the middle of a deadly pandemic.

Source