As more regions across England are expected to go into Tier 4 coronavirus restrictions due to rising Covid cases, the UK plans to distribute 100 million doses of the newly approved Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, after it was approved for authorisation of emergency supply by the UK Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).
“We will now move to vaccinate as many people as quickly as possible,” said UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who noted that the vaccine development was a ‘triumph’.
The Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine is easier to store and distribute than the Pfizer BioNTech vaccine, which the UK approved back in early December; it can be kept at normal fridge temperature unlike the Pfizer-BioNTech jab, which needs to be stored at sub-zero temperatures.
Under Tier 4 coronavirus restrictions, individuals are not allowed to travel internationally (unlike the other tiers in which travel is strongly advised against).
In a recent article from the Independent, Paul Charles, CEO of the PC Agency, asserted that holidays would be back on from 1 May 2021 thanks to the rollout of the new vaccine. “The Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine will enable so many more people to be offered protection faster. That will not only boost confidence to book, but also open up travel more quickly,” Charles said. “I’d be booking for 1 May onwards with certainty. Staycations will return from March onwards. Short-haul travel in Europe will be definite again from late April, but most long-haul destinations will still take time to open up, most likely from September onwards.”