When will people in Scotland get the Covid vaccine? Date first Pfizer vaccinations start - and priority list explained

The United Kingdom is the first to approve use of the Covid-19 vaccine from Pfizer and BioNTech – and Scots could receive the vaccine in days
Scots will receive their first vaccinations on December 8 (Getty Images)Scots will receive their first vaccinations on December 8 (Getty Images)
Scots will receive their first vaccinations on December 8 (Getty Images)

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon welcomed the news, saying that it could mark “the beginning of the end of the pandemic”.

The positive news was tempered with caution, however, with Sturgeon warning that the rollout of the vaccine to four million adults represented a “massive, massive operation”.

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The Scottish Government is working with health boards, councils and the Army on its vaccine plans, with the First Minister saying these are already “well developed”.

Ms Sturgeon said: “This is the biggest logistical peacetime challenge that the country will ever have undertaken.

“The planning is well under way. But there are people in this organisation right now who are full-time working on this to make sure this goes as we need it to.”

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When will the vaccine first be administered in Scotland?

Ms Sturgeon said that the first vaccine will be administered administered on December 8.

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She said: “The first vaccines against Covid will be administered in Scotland on Tuesday December 8.”

"This is dependent on the first vaccine doses being received in Scotland when expected, she said, but there is “no reason at this stage to doubt that”.

She added: “Today is genuinely a good day. We’re not at the end of the pandemic yet … we cannot and must not ease up in our efforts to control it.

“But today does feel like it may well be the beginning of the end of this horrible experience.”

When will the first wave of vaccines be complete?

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The first wave of Covid-19 vaccinations in Scotland could be completed by the spring, the Health Secretary has said.

Jeane Freeman said Scotland will receive 8.2% of the 800,000 doses – just over 65,500 – in the first delivery secured by the UK, with more to come in the weeks ahead.

She said: “As long as the supplies arrive in a regular basis and other vaccines come through and are authorised, then we would expect to have completed the programme for those who are in the first big wave, so that’s those over 80, health and social care workers and so on down by about the spring, and then we will move to the younger age group.”

The First Minister said it is likely to take into the new year for the two required jabs to be given out to the first recipients, as they are expected to be offered 21 to 28 days apart.

Who will receive the vaccine first?

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Once the vaccine begins to be rolled out in the UK, different groups will be prioritised access to it, based on their levels of risk.

Chairman of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), Professor Wei Shen Lim, said that while priority groups may change, the first group to receive the vaccine will be care home residents and workers.

The vaccine will then be available to different age groups from the over 80s to over 60’s, with the oldest groups as the highest priority.

Adults with underlying conditions will be prioritised next, slightly above the over 50’s.

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The JCVI has examined data on who suffers the worst outcomes from coronavirus and who is at highest risk of death.

Its interim guidance says the order of priority should be:

– Older adults in a care home and care home workers

– All those aged 80 and over and health and social care workers, though they may move up the list

– Anyone 75 and over

People aged 70 and over

– All those aged 65 and over

– High-risk adults under 65

– Moderate-risk adults under 65

– All those aged 60 and over

– All those 55 and over

– All those aged 50 and over

– The rest of the population, with priority yet to be determined.