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Covid in Scotland: Low supplies of Pfizer vaccine 'could hamper roll-out' Covid in Scotland: Low supplies of Pfizer vaccine 'could hamper roll-out'
(about 16 hours later)
About 77% of adults in Scotland have received at least a first dose of a Covid vaccineAbout 77% of adults in Scotland have received at least a first dose of a Covid vaccine
Pfizer vaccine supplies will be "tight" over the next few weeks and will restrict the vaccination programme, the health secretary has warned.Pfizer vaccine supplies will be "tight" over the next few weeks and will restrict the vaccination programme, the health secretary has warned.
Humza Yousaf has written to his UK government counterpart, Matt Hancock, to ask what can be done to increase the supply of the vaccine.Humza Yousaf has written to his UK government counterpart, Matt Hancock, to ask what can be done to increase the supply of the vaccine.
It follows advice from scientists that the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine should not be used for those under 40. It follows advice an alternative to the AstraZeneca vaccine should be offered where possible to the under-40s.
First doses of a vaccine have been given to over 77% of Scottish adults.First doses of a vaccine have been given to over 77% of Scottish adults.
And just over half of those aged 18 or over are now fully-vaccinated against Covid-19, according to Scottish government figures.And just over half of those aged 18 or over are now fully-vaccinated against Covid-19, according to Scottish government figures.
Covid in Scotland: Where are the latest cases?Covid in Scotland: Where are the latest cases?
Mr Yousaf has written to Mr Hancock ahead of a four-nation call on Thursday to say that Scotland needs more Pfizer doses if it is to "maintain or increase" the vaccination programme.Mr Yousaf has written to Mr Hancock ahead of a four-nation call on Thursday to say that Scotland needs more Pfizer doses if it is to "maintain or increase" the vaccination programme.
In his letter, he praised the "tireless work of all involved" in the roll-out and thanked the UK Vaccines Taskforce for securing supplies, acknowledging it is "working incredibly hard to maximise volumes of all supply, including Pfizer".In his letter, he praised the "tireless work of all involved" in the roll-out and thanked the UK Vaccines Taskforce for securing supplies, acknowledging it is "working incredibly hard to maximise volumes of all supply, including Pfizer".
The Scottish government has a target of offering first doses to all adults by the end of July.The Scottish government has a target of offering first doses to all adults by the end of July.
The advice that the under-40s should not receive the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine came from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) in May. The advice that the under-40s should be offered an alternative to the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine came from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) in May.
It was issued after a link with rare blood clots was identified.It was issued after a link with rare blood clots was identified.
Mr Yousaf said in the letter: "I am very clear that this is a race and we must therefore do absolutely everything in our power to accelerate our efforts to vaccinate as many people as possible.Mr Yousaf said in the letter: "I am very clear that this is a race and we must therefore do absolutely everything in our power to accelerate our efforts to vaccinate as many people as possible.
"I appreciate we are all doing what we can in this regard, but I am conscious that the recent changes by JCVI on the role of AstraZeneca have placed increased pressure on our supply of Pfizer in particular."I appreciate we are all doing what we can in this regard, but I am conscious that the recent changes by JCVI on the role of AstraZeneca have placed increased pressure on our supply of Pfizer in particular.
"The latest forecast on supply would indicate that Pfizer will be particularly tight over the next few weeks and as a consequence the programme won't be able to accelerate as much as I would wish.""The latest forecast on supply would indicate that Pfizer will be particularly tight over the next few weeks and as a consequence the programme won't be able to accelerate as much as I would wish."
Mr Yousaf added that he wanted to discuss what more could be done to "further increase the available supply" over the coming weeks.Mr Yousaf added that he wanted to discuss what more could be done to "further increase the available supply" over the coming weeks.
RULES: What are the restrictions in your area?RULES: What are the restrictions in your area?
EASING: What rules are changing, and when?EASING: What rules are changing, and when?
CASES: Where are the latest cases in Scotland?CASES: Where are the latest cases in Scotland?
WHO? The people who have died with Covid-19WHO? The people who have died with Covid-19