COVID-19: UK reports another six deaths as 33.7m have had a first vaccine dose

·2-min read

The UK has reported another six coronavirus-related deaths and 2,064 new cases in the latest 24-hour period, government figures show.

The data compares to 11 deaths and 1,712 cases announced on Sunday, while last Monday four fatalities and 2,963 infections were reported.

Since the pandemic started, a total of 127,434 people have died in the UK within 28 days of testing positive for COVID-19 and there have been 4,406,946 laboratory-confirmed cases.

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Meanwhile, a further 79,695 people had their first dose of a coronavirus vaccine yesterday, meaning a total of 33,752,885 people have now had at least one jab.

And 260,801 had their second shot yesterday, bringing the total number of people who have been fully vaccinated to 12,897,123.

On Saturday, it was announced that more than half the UK's population has now had a coronavirus vaccine.

It comes as the vaccination programme is being expanded to younger age groups, with the government launching a campaign to encourage people aged under 50 to get the jab vaccine so the UK can "continue on the path back to normality".

In England, 44-year-olds are next in line, with invitations sent out to around 500,000 people from today.

It is the first time the vaccine rollout in England has been extended by a single year group - previously the age-based approach to the programme had offered the jab to people in age brackets.

More than two-thirds of those aged 45 to 49 have already been vaccinated and the decision to move to people aged 40 to 43 will be set out in the coming days.

Boris Johnson has denied saying he would rather see "bodies pile high in their thousands" than have another COVID lockdown.

The prime minister rebuffed newspaper allegations that he had made the comments in October, just prior to England's second national lockdown.

The Daily Mail on Monday reported that Mr Johnson exclaimed after a Number 10 meeting at the time: "No more ****ing lockdowns - let the bodies pile high in their thousands!"

But, asked if he had ever made those remarks during a visit to Wrexham at Monday lunchtime, the prime minister said: "No.

"The important thing I think people want us to get on and do as a government is to make sure that the lockdowns work and they have."