The army and extra NHS staff will be deployed across regions in the UK to help achieve Boris Johnson’s target to vaccinate more than a million people every day with booster jabs this Christmas and prevent a New Year lockdown

The army and extra NHS staff will be deployed across regions in the UK to help achieve Boris Johnson’s target to vaccinate more than a million people every day with booster jabs this Christmas and prevent a New Year lockdown. 

In his address to the nation last night the Prime Minister announced he was rapidly speeding up the UK’s  booster jab rollout as he warned the country: ‘There is a tidal wave of  coming.’

Launching what he described as the ‘Omicron Emergency Boost’, Mr Johnson said everyone over the age of 18 would now be offered their booster before the New Year and that in order to deliver the necessary jabs by the end of the year ‘we’ll need to match the NHS’s best vaccination day yet – and then beat it day after day’. 

But in the first sign of chaos, the NHS’s online booking site crashed this morning as thousands of desperate Britons crammed onto the site to try to arrange their top-up jab. 

No10’s scaling up of the programme will see extra nurses and healthcare staff taken off normal duties and routine treatments cancelled.NHS bosses today warned of the ‘huge’ logistical task ahead, saying it would take ‘time’ to get fully up and running.

The drive will also see 42 military planning teams across every region, additional vaccine sites and mobile units, an extension of opening hours for clinics so they run seven days a week and thousands of extra volunteer vaccinators trained.

The PM’s intervention last night comes amid the ever-growing threat of tougher restrictions in January, with the potential for a new lockdown if Omicron cases surge out of control after the UK’s Covid alert level was raised from Level 3 to Level 4.

Both Scotland and Wales have dangled the possibility of having to go even further in bid to ward off the highly-transmissible variant. 

Yesterday the UK reported another 1,239 confirmed cases of the Omicron variant — an increase of 65 per cent in the past 24 hours.It was the highest daily rise and more than double the previous record, with the total number of known cases now sitting above 3,000. 

In his speech the PM urged people to ‘get boosted now’ and said the UK is ‘now facing an emergency in our battle with the new variant’ and https://agen668.learnyst.com ‘we must urgently reinforce our wall of vaccine protection to keep our friends and loved ones safe’. 

The PM said the data was now clear that two doses of the vaccine are ‘simply not enough to give the level of protection we all need’ but the ‘good news is that our scientists are confident that with a third dose – a booster dose – we can all bring our level of protection back up’.  

He said this will require ‘an extraordinary effort’ as he revealed some medical appointments will have to be postponed until 2022 so that clinicians can commit to administering jabs.       

Mr Johnson said ‘every adult over 18 who has had a second dose of the vaccine at least three months ago’ will be eligible for a jab from tomorrow.  

Figures show that a total of 23,124,829 – 40.2 per cent of people aged 12 and over in the UK – have now received a booster jab but the rollout will now need to rapidly increase in order to meet the target.

Approximately 20million people are likely to be eligible for the booster under the criteria which means the rollout will need to administer around one million jabs a day to hit the PM’s goal.

The formal NHS Booking System will be open to the younger age groups from Wednesday but Mr Johnson said ‘in some places you can walk in from tomorrow’. 

In his address the Prime Minister said:  ‘Over the past year we have shown that vaccination is the key to beating Covid and that it works

‘The UK was the first country in the world to administer a vaccine, we delivered the fastest rollout in Europe and we begun the fastest booster campaign too with over half-a-million jabs delivered yesterday alone.

‘These achievements made possible by the extraordinary efforts of our NHS, including thousands of GPs and volunteer vaccinators have literally saved countless lives and livelihoods in this country.  

‘But I need to speak to you this evening because I’m afraid we’re now facing an emergency in our battle with the new variant Omicron and we must urgently reinforce our wall of vaccine protection to keep our friends and loved ones safe. ‘ 

Mr Johnson went on to say that that UK’s four chief medical officers had now raised the Covid alert level to four  – it’s second highest level- because of the evidence that Omicron is doubling in the UK every two to three days. 

Boris Johnson urged people to 'get boosted now' and said the UK is 'now facing an emergency in our battle with the new variant'

Boris Johnson urged people to ‘get boosted now’ and said the UK is ‘now facing an emergency in our battle with the new variant’

According to NHS data, many older age groups who have been eligible to get a Covid booster since September still have double digit percentage figures of people who are yet to get a third dose.Yesterday, the NHS online booking system for Covid boosters was opened up to the over 40s. 81 per cent of people aged 40-to-49 have yet to have a booster. 

It means that everyone eligible aged 18 and over will have the chance to get their booster before the New Year, with Mr Johnson urging people to 'get boosted now'

It means that everyone eligible aged 18 and over will have the chance to get their booster before the New Year, with Mr Johnson urging people to ‘get boosted now’

The Prime Minister said he was launching the 'Omicron Emergency Boost' and said that in order to deliver the necessary jabs by the end of the year 'we'll need to match the NHS's best vaccination day yet - and then beat it day after day'

The Prime Minister said he was launching the ‘Omicron Emergency Boost’ and said that in order to deliver the necessary jabs by the end of the year ‘we’ll need to match the NHS’s best vaccination day yet – and then beat it day after day’

The UK Covid alert level was raised from level 3 to level 4 after the UK reported another 1,239 confirmed cases of the Omicron variant 

 

He continued: ‘We know from bitter experience how these exponential curves develop. No one should be in any doubt there is a tidal wave of Omicron coming and I’m afraid it is now clear that two doses of vaccine are simply not enough to give the level of protection we all need.

<div class="art-ins mol-factbox news halfRHS" data-version="2" id="mol-6592cae0-5b90-11ec-aa36-5dafb84b92ea" website Johnson ramps up Covid booster rollout to tackle Omicron

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