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Boris Johnson has revealed that the UK is set to have offered every single resident over the age of 50 a Covid vaccine by the end of April.
The Prime Minister made the revelation while holding today's Downing Street press conference on Monday, February 15 at 5pm following the "significant" vaccination "milestone" of 15m people.
The PM said: "If we can keep this pace up, and if we can keep supply steady, and I hope and believe we can. Then we hope to offer a vaccine to everyone in the first nine priority groups including everyone over 50, by the end of April.
"At the same time we will be giving second doses to millions of the most vulnerable.
"This moment is a huge step forward, but it is still only a step. While it shows what this country can do, we must be optimistic but also patient, and next week I will be setting out a roadmap saying as much as we possibly can about the route to normality, even though some things are still very uncertain.
"We want this lockdown to be the last and we want progress to be cautious but also irreversible."
Everyone in the top four priority groups has now been offered their first jab, and over-65s and the clinically vulnerable are now being invited to receive their first dose.
Mr Johnson went on to admit he could not guarantee there would be no further lockdowns although he stressed that "science is now unquestionably in the ascendancy over the disease".
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The Prime Minister told the Downing Street press conference: "I can't give that guarantee, of course not, because we are battling with nature, with a disease that is capable of mutating and changing.
"I'm increasingly confident, I'm increasingly optimistic about the sheer extent of the possibilities that are opening up with vaccinations.
"I will be setting out as much of a timetable as we can give on the 22nd and I'm very hopeful that we will be able to go ahead and open things up."
Mr Johnson on Sunday hinted at giving a confirmation of which year groups will be able to return to school from March 8, a provisional deadline the government gave in January.
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The Prime Minister confirmed he would be discussing the nation’s vaccine effort on Sunday when the 15m milestone was announced.
In a video message posted to Instagram and Twitter, Mr Johnson said: "In England, I can now tell you, we have offered jabs to everyone in the first four priority groups, the people most likely to be severely ill from coronavirus, hitting the target that we set ourselves."
He added that there would still "undoubtedly be bumps in the road" but called the goal "a significant milestone in the United Kingdom’s national vaccination programme".
- Boris Johnson
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