Commenting on the approval of the Moderna vaccine
, Danny Mortimer, chief executive of the NHS Confederation, said: “This is another important step forward in protecting people from COVID-19, and with every new vaccine and treatment, the vice-like grip of the virus will, in time, loosen that bit more. However, we must remember that while this is a milestone, it does not mean the COVID-19 crisis today is over, especially as a major incident is declared in London, hospitalisations for coronavirus continue to rocket, and as many as 1 in 50 people are now infected.
“The Moderna jab will not be available until Spring, and gives authorities more time to set clear policy for its delivery. In the meantime, NHS teams are working exceptionally hard to give the Pfizer and AstraZeneca vaccines to priority groups, and they look forward to greater access to the AstraZeneca vaccine and greater local control over its distribution. It will, however, be weeks and months until the NHS feels the benefit of the vaccination programme.
“The key strategy for controlling the spread of infection and preventing real harm to our loved ones and neighbours in the coming weeks remains the lockdown and our compliance as a society with its rules. We must all ensure that we continue to abide by restrictions and keep social contact to an absolute minimum."