One and a half million people have had their first dose.
Scotland’s vaccination programme has delivered first doses of the coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine to a third (33.4%) of those eligible – more than 1.5 million people (1,515,980).
In addition, the roll-out among those aged 65-69 has already exceeded the 80% take up rate set out in the deployment plan and currently stands at 85% (255,266). This group is due to be completed by the end of February. Vaccinations are now also being delivered to people with underlying health conditions and unpaid carers – the next group on the Joint Committee for Vaccination and Immunisation priority list.
Meanwhile, second doses of the vaccine are being given to residents in care homes and the staff who care for them. Frontline Health and Social Care workers are also receiving their second injections.
Supplies of vaccines were held back in order that these second doses could be delivered on time to these cohorts.
Older residents in care homes are among those at greatest risk from the virus and the programme has exceeded the initial target for this group with 31,218 receiving their first dose – the figure for the staff who care for them is 96%. For all care homes the total is 98% of residents and 83% of staff. The high take up of vaccinations and the improving picture in terms of care home outbreaks has helped contribute to the restart of routine indoor visiting of care home residents by relatives, friends and carers from this week.
Heath Secretary Jeane Freeman said:
“A third of those eligible for the COVID-19 vaccination in Scotland have now received their first dose – that is one and a half million people in the groups which were prioritised to address 99 per cent of preventable deaths associated with COVID-19.
“Scotland’s COVID-19 vaccination programme continues to deliver at pace, which is down to the enormous efforts of our vaccination teams. I would like to thank everyone who is working tirelessly to make this a success, and also every individual who has taken up their offer of a vaccine.
“I am pleased to see care home residents and those who look after them receiving their second doses, as well as NHS frontline staff. These are crucial as they provide longer lasting protection against the virus.
“The high take up of the vaccine in these settings has contributed to a reduction in outbreaks of the virus in care homes and helped to enable the forthcoming resumption of weekly routine visits, meaning families can be reunited with their relatives in care.
“The vaccination programme is one of three key ways we are working to beat this virus, along with our expanded testing programme to identify cases and break chains of transmission and the important lockdown restrictions everyone in Scotland must follow. All these measures work to greatest effect when they work together.”