The UK has set a new daily coronavirus vaccine record for the second day running.
A further 844,285 combined first and second doses were administered in a single day on Saturday, health secretary Matt Hancock confirmed. This is up from 711,156 on Friday.
Government data up to 20 March shows that of the 29,859,742 jabs given in the UK so far, 27,630,970 were first doses - a rise of 752,308 on the previous day.
Some 2,228,772 were second doses, an increase of 91,977.
Prime minister Boris Johnson thanked “everyone involved” in the vaccine rollout.
He said: “Yesterday was a record-breaking day for the vaccine rollout, with 873,784 people receiving a jab.
“A huge thank you to everyone involved and please come forward to get your jab when you are invited to do so.”
The announcement comes a day after Mr Hancock hailed the UK’s Covid vaccine programme as a “national success story” as he revealed half of all UK adults had received their first dose.
Defence secretary Ben Wallace has warned it would be “premature” for Britons to book holidays overseas this summer.
Mr Wallace said the UK should avoid throwing away the gains of its vaccination campaign by allowing dangerous variants into the country via returning tourists.
Professor Andrew Hayward, of University College London (UCL), meanwhile, said “another wave” of coronavirus cases was “likely” in the UK – although its consequences would be less due to high levels of vaccination.
Asked if a “fourth wave” of infections could be possible if “mistakes” are made during the easing of lockdown measures, the scientist told Times Radio: “I think another wave is possible, likely even.
“I guess the difference is that another wave will cause substantially fewer deaths and hospitalisations because of high levels of vaccination across the sorts of people who would have ended up in hospital or unfortunately dying if they haven't been vaccinated.
“So the consequences of another wave are less. I think the challenge is of course we don't know exactly how much less.”
Additional reporting by PA
Join our new commenting forum
Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies