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Octogenarian becomes first person to get Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine in UK

London: An 82-year-old retired maintenance manager became the first person in the world to receive the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine for COVID-19.

Dialysis patient Brian Pinker received the jab at 1300 hrs IST on Monday from nurse Sam Foster at Oxford’s Churchill Hospital, BBC reported.

The broadcaster quoted Health Secretary Matt Hancock as saying that it was a ‘pivotal moment’ in the UK’s fight against the virus, as vaccines will help curb infections and allow restrictions to be lifted.

The UK was the first country to approve the Oxford-AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine that can be stored at normal refrigerator temperatures of 2-8 degree Celsius, making it easier to store and transport to far-flung areas.

Expressing his happiness, Mr Pinker said, ‘The health staff was brilliant and I can now really look forward to celebrating my 48th wedding anniversary with my wife Shirley later this year.’

Over half a million doses of the vaccine are ready for use on Monday.

The UK had also approved the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, which has to be stored at very low temperatures, in December last year.

On Sunday, the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) had also announced the formal approval for the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, along with Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin in India.

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