Queen Elizabeth and husband receive COVID-19 vaccines: palace

World

WINDSOR, UNITED KINGDOM – MAY 19: Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh attend the wedding of Prince Harry to Meghan Markle at St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle on May 19, 2018 in Windsor, England. (Photo by Jonathan Brady – WPA Pool/Getty Images)

LONDON (Reuters)  —  Britain’s Queen Elizabeth and her husband Philip, both in their nineties, have received vaccinations against COVID-19, Buckingham Palace said on Saturday.

“The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh have today received COVID-19 vaccinations,” the palace said in a statement. The Queen is 94 years old and Philip is 99, putting them in the priority category in Britain’s coronavirus vaccine rollout.

A royal source said the vaccines were administered by a household doctor at the queen’s Windsor Castle residence, adding that she made the news public to counter any speculation.

With a highly transmissible new variant of the virus surging across Britain, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has shuttered the economy and is rushing out vaccines in a bid to stem the spread of the pandemic.

The government plans to vaccinate the elderly, the vulnerable and frontline workers – around 15 million people – by mid-February, to ease a new strict lockdown imposed after a spike in cases to daily records.

Britain has the world’s fifth-highest official death toll from COVID-19 at nearly 80,000, and the 1,325 deaths reported within 28 days of a positive test on Friday surpassed the previous daily record toll from last April.

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