A quarter of UK adults are now fully vaccinated against Covid-19, with a record number of second doses delivered in the past seven days, latest figures show.
A total of 13,201,811 people have now received both jabs – the equivalent of 25.1% of the adult population.
Wales is estimated to have given two doses to 27.8% of adults, ahead of England (24.9%), Scotland (24.9%) and Northern Ireland (24.5%).
The figures are for vaccinations reported by the UK’s health agencies up to and including April 26, and reflect the pace at which second doses have been ramped up across the country during the past month.
Just under 2.8 million second doses were recorded in the week to April 26 – the highest number for any seven-day period so far – with nearly 8.7 million since April 1.
This compares with just under 3.7 million second doses in March and just 321,607 in February.
Second doses of Covid-19 vaccines must follow within 12 weeks of the first, meaning the millions of people who received their initial jab in February have recently had a follow-up dose, or are due to get the jab shortly.
People aged 80 and over were among the first groups on the priority list for vaccines, with initial doses offered from early December.
Around 83% of people in England in this age group are estimated to have received both doses of vaccine, along with 85% in Wales and 89% in Scotland.
Responding to the latest figures, Ruth Rankine, primary care director at the NHS Confederation, said: “Today we reach another milestone in the UK’s vaccination campaign and this is yet more evidence of the heroic efforts of so many people across the NHS, including and especially primary care, to make sure as many people as possible are protected.
“People across the UK who are eligible to come forward for a jab should continue to do so. But at the same time, we need to continue to follow the rules, maintaining social distancing and wearing masks to make sure the progress we have made in recent weeks can continue. With growing numbers of cases in the UK of mutant strains of the virus, we must not fall into the trap of believing the crisis is over.”
Wales leads the field in both first and second doses of vaccine, with around seven in 10 of its adult population having received the first jab (70.8%), followed by England (64.1%), Northern Ireland (63.3%) and Scotland (62.7%).
A total of 33,843,580 first doses have now been given across the UK – the equivalent of 64.3% of adults.
Research published last week by the Office for National Statistics and Oxford University found that Covid-19 infections fell by 65% after a first dose of the Oxford/AstraZeneca or Pfizer/BioNTech vaccines, rising further after the second dose.