Britain’s Queen Elizabeth and her husband Philip joined the country’s vaccination drive on Saturday as health officials said the UK had recorded more than three million cases since the start of the pandemic.
“The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh have today received Covid-19 vaccinations,” the Buckingham Palace said in a statement.
The Queen is 94 years old and Philip is 99.
A royal source said the vaccines were administered by a household doctor at the queen’s Windsor Castle residence, adding that she made the news public to counter any speculation.
With a highly transmissible new variant of the virus surging across Britain, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has shuttered the economy and is rushing out vaccines in a bid to stem the spread of the pandemic.
More than 1.5 million people in Britain have so far received virus jabs, as the biggest immunization program in its history rolls out with priority given to the elderly, their carers, and health workers.
The government plans to vaccinate around 15 million people by mid-February, to ease a new strict lockdown imposed after a spike in cases to daily records.
Britain, which has so far administered two types of vaccines, is racing to inoculate as many people as possible as a new variant believed to be more contagious pushes infections and deaths to unprecedented levels.
British health authorities on Saturday said the country had recorded over three million coronavirus cases since the pandemic began last year after the government announced another 59,937 new daily cases.
The country also recorded another 1,035 fatalities from the virus, taking the total death toll to 80,868, one of the highest in Europe alongside Italy. – AFP.