A RECORD one million jabs were booked on Tuesday by young people keen to get life back to normal.
Youngsters fuelled a “blockbuster” rush on the NHS booking site, snapping up more than 750 appointments per minute, after vaccines rolled out to the 25-29 age group.
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The vaccine programme ramped up again this week. Pictured: Queues for jabs in London, June 1[/caption]
Health service chief Sir Simon Stevens said the surge has “blown out of the water” fears that people in their 20s might- not want jabs.
He said: “Enthusiasm for the biggest and most successful vaccination programme remains strong as bookings for the lifesaving jab have reached an all-time high.
“It’s great that 25 to 29-year-olds sent bookings to blockbuster levels, following hot on the heels of the millions of others.
“The obvious enthusiasm of younger adults to get their jab has blown out of the water the suggestion that they might not come forward to protect themselves and their loved ones.
“Remember, you’re next when you get the text.”
Three million text messages inviting people to book their vaccine are being sent out this week.
Four times as many slots were booked on Tuesday compared with the day before and the same day last week.
A total of 1,082,596 appointments were made – around 45,000 an hour and more than 750 every minute.
The surge was compared to the annual rush for Glastonbury tickets by both Sir Simon and youngsters.
Yesterday, people shared pictures of themselves in virtual “queues” waiting to reserve a jab.
Joe Kinsella tweeted: “Why did no one tell me getting a vaccine slot would be like getting Glastonbury tickets?? I also got the same rush when I got a slot.”
Ryan Callard wrote: “Getting a vaccine booking in West London this morning had crazy Glastonbury ticket vibes.”
Rhiannon Black tweeted: “Booking vaccine appointments like it’s f***ing Glastonbury.”
Harriet Hirshman added: “In the queue to book a vaccine slot on my laptop and phone, feeling like I’m trying for Glastonbury tickets.”
So far NHS England has delivered more than 58million vaccine doses. More than 75 per cent of adults have had at least one dose, and half are now fully vaccinated.
Dr Emily Lawson, head of the NHS Covid Vaccination Programme, said: “Hitting one million bookings in a day sends a fantastic signal that getting the jab is something that all of us – no matter our age – can value and get excited about.”
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Tuesday marked six months since Margaret Keenan became the first person in the world to receive a Covid vaccine in Coventry, West Mids, and kick-started the UK’s world-leading jabs blitz.
Early research has shown the vaccines are highly effective at preventing serious illness and death caused by Covid variants.
Vaccine centres are available in convenient locations such as shopping centres, pharmacies, mosques, museums and rugby grounds.