Photos show what it looks like in the UK as citizens receive the first doses of the new COVID-19 vaccine

Victoria Jones/Pool via APA woman with the first of two COVID-19 vaccine shots administered at Guy’s Hospital in London.
  • The UK began vaccinating seniors against COVID-19 on Tuesday.
  • The milestone came less than a week after the country became the first in the West to approve a COVID-19 vaccine.
  • Here’s what it looked like in the UK on “V-Day,” when the first people outside clinical trials received doses of the vaccine developed by Pfizer and BioNTech.
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The UK health regulator approved the vaccine developed by Pfizer and BioNTech on December 2. The country is the first in the West to approve and, after Tuesday, administer a COVID-19 vaccine outside clinical trials.

Andrew Milligan – Pool / Getty ImagesThe deputy charge nurse Katie McIntosh waiting to administer the first of two vaccine shots to workers at the Western General Hospital in Edinburgh, Scotland, on Tuesday.

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The country said care-home residents and their carers would get first access to the vaccine. The country started giving doses Tuesday.

Andrew Milligan – Pool / Getty ImagesSyringes in a tray at the Western General Hospital in Edinburgh containing the vaccine developed by Pfizer and BioNTech.

The UK ordered 40 million doses of the vaccine developed by Pfizer and BioNTech, enough to vaccinate 20 million people. The country’s population is roughly 67 million.

Justin Tallis – Pool / Getty Images

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The country received 800,000 initial doses, enough for 400,000 people to get vaccinated in the country’s first wave, per UK Health Secretary Matt Hancock.

ANDREW MILLIGAN/POOL/AFP via Getty ImagesA consent form being filled out at the Western General Hospital in Edinburgh.

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UK public-health officials dubbed the first day of vaccine shots “V-Day.”

Andrew Milligan/Pool via APThe nurse Katie McIntosh administering an injection of Pfizer and BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine to the clinical nurse manager Fiona Churchill at the Western General Hospital.

Source: Associated Press


Margaret Keenan, a 90-year-old grandmother of four, on Tuesday became the first person in the West to receive a COVID-19 vaccine outside trials.

JACOB KING/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

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“I feel so privileged to be the first person vaccinated against COVID-19,” Keenan told the Associated Press. “I can finally look forward to spending time with my family and friends in the New Year after being on my own for most of the year.”

ACOB KING/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

Source: Associated Press


The first man to receive a vaccine in the UK on Tuesday was an Englishman named William Shakespeare. One popular internet comment described the moment as “The Taming of the Flu,” a pun on literary great William Shakespeare’s “Taming of the Shrew.”

Stock Montage/Getty Images/JACOB KING/POOL/AFP via Getty ImagesAn image showing William Shakespeare, 81, getting the Pfizer vaccine on Tuesday and an image of the English playwright and poet of the same name.

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UK health officials said medical workers had contacted people eligible for vaccine doses to arrange appointments.

Source: Associated Press


The US infectious-disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci initially criticised the UK’s approval process as “rushed” but later apologised and said he had faith in the country’s regulators.

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An independent advisory committee is scheduled to meet Thursday to decide whether to recommend that the US Food and Drug Administration authorise Pfizer and BioNTech’s vaccine for emergency use.

Jack Hill – Pool / Getty ImagesJosephine Faleye, 80, with the senior nurse Dilhani Somaweera at the Royal Free hospital on Tuesday in London.

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For more information on COVID-19 vaccines, read the links below.

Victoria Jones/Pool via APA woman with vaccine doses at Guy’s Hospital in London.

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