‘Vaccinate 2 million people per week to avoid third wave’ experts warn Govt

Two million people need to be vaccinated every week in order to avoid a third wave of coronavirus, according to experts.

In a new paper published by the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM), scientists have warned ministers of the drastic steps that need to be taken.

The paper has been shared with the Government's Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage) and claims a devastating third wave is highly likely unless the current target of vaccines is doubled.

This weekend it was reported a 'game-changing' home-grown Oxford jab is expected to be approved on Monday.

The first jabs are expected to be rolled out a week after the new drug gets the green light.

So far around 200,000 people have been vaccinated with the Pfizer/BioNTech jab.

By January at least one million jabs per week will be delivered, according to a Government source speaking to The Telegraph.

However, according to the LSHTM paper, this is not enough to prevent a second wave.

The paper says: "The most stringent intervention scenario with Tier 4 England-wide and schools closed during January and two million individuals vaccinated per week is the only scenario we considered which reduces peak ICU burden below the levels seen during the first wave."

When the Oxford vaccine gets approval the Government hopes enough doses will be available to inoculate those most vulnerable to the virus within a matter of weeks.

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The vaccine is said to offer hopes of a rapid expansion of roll-out of jabs due to the way it is stored – it does not require special storage unlike the Pfizer/BioNTech jab.

Sir Simon Stevens, chief executive of the NHS says the Oxford vaccine is "The ­biggest chink of hope for the year ahead.

“We are back in the eye of the storm with a second wave of coronavirus sweeping Europe and, indeed, this country."

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