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UK orders 35 million Pfizer jabs for potential 2022 booster programme

by Costanza Pearce
24 August 2021

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The UK has ordered a further 35 million Pfizer/BioNTech Covid vaccines due to arrive from the second half of next year, the Government has announced.

The doses could be used for potential future booster programmes, it said.

It comes as GPs are preparing for a booster programme for the most vulnerable due to run from sometime in September, although exactly who will be prioritised is yet to be finalised.

The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) today announced that it has agreed a contract for 35 million more doses of the Pfizer vaccine to be delivered ‘from the second half’ of 2022.

It said this is part of ‘robust plans’ to ‘future-proof the country from the threat of Covid-19 and its variants through safe and effective vaccines’, including via ‘any future booster programmes’.

Health secretary Sajid Javid said: ‘The UK’s phenomenal vaccination programme is providing tens of millions of people with protection from Covid-19, saving 95,200 lives and preventing 82,100 hospitalisations in the over 65s in England alone.

‘While we continue to build this wall of defence from Covid-19, it’s also vital we do everything we can to protect the country for the future too – whether that’s from the virus as we know it or new variants.’

The Vaccine Taskforce has ‘contracts in place with multiple vaccine manufacturers’, the DHSC added.

It reiterated the UK’s commitment to donating 100 million vaccine doses to support global recovery ‘within the next year’, with the first nine-million donation of AstraZeneca jabs announced last month.

Last month, the vaccines minister revealed that the Government had ordered additional doses of the Pfizer jab needed to vaccinate more than 370,000 children against Covid.

Meanwhile, the MHRA has approved the first novel monoclonal antibody treatment to be used in the prevention and treatment of ‘acute’ Covid-19 infection.

This story first appeared on our sister title, Pulse.