The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall have warned of the deadly dangers of being unvaccinated, urging those who are hesitant to get their Covid-19 jabs and boosters.
Charles and Camilla confirmed they have both had their boosters as they issued a plea on the anniversary of the world’s first Covid jab being given as part of a mass vaccination programme.
“To all those who have not yet had the vaccine – or are hesitating before getting a booster – we can only urge you to look at the evidence in our intensive care wards and listen to those who work there,” they said.
They added: “We urge everyone to get vaccinated and to take up the booster, as we have done ourselves.”
The royal couple paid tribute to the “remarkable ingenuity and determination” of those involved in creating and delivering millions of doses since Margaret Keenan, at the age of 90, received the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine in Coventry on December 8 2020.
But in impassioned remarks, they stressed that people who were unvaccinated were 10 times more likely to be end up in hospital or die than those who have had two vaccine doses.
In a statement released by Clarence House, Charles and Camilla said: “It is the most enormous tribute to the remarkable ingenuity and determination of everyone involved that, one year after the first Covid-19 vaccination, more than a hundred million doses have now been delivered.
“We can only offer our most heartfelt thanks and congratulations to all the scientists, volunteers and workers across the NHS who have helped bring about this extraordinary achievement.
“And to all those who have not yet had the vaccine – or are hesitating before getting a booster – we can only urge you to look at the evidence in our intensive care wards and listen to those who work there.
“People who are unvaccinated are at least 10 times more likely to be hospitalised or die than those who have had two vaccine doses.
“That is why we urge everyone to get vaccinated and to take up the booster, as we have done ourselves.”
Charles, 73, who contracted Covid in 2020 before the vaccine was available, and Camilla, 74, were confirmed in February to have had their first vaccinations.
They were given their boosters six months after their second jabs, so are likely to have received them in November.
The duchess, who dislikes needles, revealed after her first jab that she had the AstraZeneca version and was so delighted at being vaccinated that she “leapt for joy” and that it didn’t hurt.
It is understood that Charles and Camilla had a different booster to their first two doses.
Since the world’s first vaccination a year ago, around one in 10 eligible people in the UK – 6.4 million – remain unvaccinated.
Just over 51 million first doses of vaccine have now been given in the UK, along with more than 46 million second doses and 20 million extra doses.
But there are still people in all age groups who have not received any, including nearly one in four young adults.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson told ministers on Tuesday that the Omicron variant of coronavirus appears to be “more transmissible” than Delta.
Professor Tim Spector has meanwhile warned cases of the Omicron variant in the UK are soon expected to be higher than in some African countries placed on the travel red list.
The expert in genetic epidemiology at King’s College London said early data suggested cases of the coronavirus mutation are doubling every two days.