More than one third (34.6%, 1,036,605) of people aged 80 and over in England have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine as of 10 January, new surveillance data from Public Health England (PHE) shows.
Older people are more likely to die from COVID-19, which is why they are being prioritised for vaccination. Over 80s are in the second priority group after care home residents and staff, as recommended by the independent Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI).
A further 960,699 (1.7%) people under 80 have also had the first dose.
As well as uptake by age, PHE’s new weekly report includes a breakdown of coverage by region – which is the percentage of all eligible people who have been vaccinated. More high-quality data will become available in the coming weeks to provide further insight into groups where uptake of the vaccine can be increased.
Coverage is an important public health measure as it helps us to determine how well the population is protected as a whole and to look at where we should be focusing our efforts to increase uptake.
PHE will continue to monitor the long-term safety, uptake and efficacy of the COVID-19 vaccine. Data on under-vaccinated groups, the impact of vaccination on cases, hospitalisations and death, the effectiveness of the vaccine at preventing disease and transmission as well as the duration of protection will be published in future reports.
Dr Mary Ramsay, Head of Immunisation at PHE, said:
To have vaccinated over a third of all over 80s by this point in the programme is a great achievement and I want to pay tribute to all those across the health system who have made this happen. Although this sets us on the right path to getting back to normal life, we are not there yet and people must continue to follow the guidance that is in place to protect themselves and their loved ones.
These data will help us to evaluate the protection from the vaccine and to effectively target the roll-out of the programme to help control the virus and save lives.