LONDON health chiefs are on standby to start taking deliveries of Covid vaccine stocks from next week, The Sun can reveal.
Health sources say staff at a major London hospital trust have been told to be ready to receive the first batches of the Oxford Astra-Zenica jab from “week commencing the 2 November.”
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The vaccine is still in testing, but a major effort has been ordered to have the world-leading hospital ready to go as soon as it is given the green light.
The Sun has learnt other clinical trials at the famous hospital have been paused as all resources go toward preparing to vaccinate thousands of doctors, nurses and other frontline staff.
And extra security measures are being planned over fears of anti-vaccine protests and to protect the valuable stock.
As it is likely to be one of the first hospitals in the world to begin vaccinating frontline health workers, there are fears it could be targeted and requires extra support.
A Whitehall source said: “They are liaising with the police and even the Army over a number of security concerns.”
It comes as the Mail on Sunday reported the George Eliot Hospital NHS Trust, Warwickshire “has been told to be prepared to start a Covid-19 staff vaccine programme in early December”.
Further hope came as White House top medic Dr Anthony Fauci said: "We will know whether a vaccine is safe and effective by the end of November, the beginning of December."
The Sun says
IT normally takes ten years to develop a vaccine from start to finish, to the point where you can start administering it to patients.
But it looks like the brilliant Oxford team is nearly there already.
As The Sun reveals today, London health chiefs are on standby to take deliveries of Covid vaccine stocks as early as next week.
More proof that Britain is truly a world leader in medical science.
He told the BBC: "The question is, once you have a safe and effective vaccine, or more than one, how can you get it to the people who need it as quickly as possible?”
Last night the Health department said: “The NHS has a tried and tested track record for delivering vaccination programmes and will work with existing partners across the healthcare system to ensure a Covid-19 vaccine can be deployed safely and effectively.”
The spokesman added: “A Covid-19 vaccine will only be deployed once it has been proven to be safe and effective through robust clinical trials and approved for use by the independent regulator.”
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