The age at which people will be able to get a Covid vaccine is set to be lowered again from Thursday.
People aged 38 and 39 will be able to book their vaccinations in England, NHS sources have told the PA news agency.
They will be the first age group to be offered an alternative vaccine to the one manufactured by drugs giant AstraZeneca.
Last week the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) recommended younger people be given the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine instead due to concerns about rare blood clots.
More than 35.5million people have had their first dose of the vaccine, equivalent to 67.6% of the entire UK adult population.
Some 18million have had their second dose, providing them with high levels of protection.
The Government is aiming to offer all adults their first dose by the end of July and are proceeding with the rollout in decreasing age order.
People aged over 40 have been able to book their vaccines since April 30.
On Monday, Public health England released new research which showed a single dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine lowers the risk of death by approximately 80%, compared with unvaccinated individuals.
Protection against death from the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine rises from approximately 80% after one dose to 97% after two doses.
Both jabs are also highly effective at reducing the risk of being hospitalised with the virus.
It comes as new statistics showed deaths involving Covid-19 in England and Wales have fallen to their lowest level since mid-September.
A total of 205 deaths registered in the week ending April 30 mentioned Covid on the death certificate – the lowest number since the week ending September 18. The figure is also down 21% on the previous week.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock said the data indicated ‘our strategy is working’.
‘The vaccine is saving lives in the real world, so when it’s your turn, come forward & get the jab,’ he tweeted.
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