How many people in Scotland are not taking the Covid vaccine?

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Image source, Reuters

More than 2.7 million people in Scotland have had their first dose of a Covid-19 vaccination, 60% of those aged 16 and over. In those aged over-70 close to 100% of people have been vaccinated. Yet in some vulnerable groups the figure is lower.

The target was to offer the first dose to all nine JCVI priority groups by the middle of April and the Scottish government said that was "effectively" done.

While some priority groups have seen almost total vaccine coverage others appear to remain lower.

According to the latest Public Health Scotland data, 86.6% of people in JCVI category 6 - which covers people aged 16 to 64 with underlying health conditions - have had their first dose.

This is a large group of more than 660,000 people, which means more than 88,000 have not yet had a first dose.

The figures also show that about 33,000 people aged 50 to 54 (JCVI group 9) have yet to receive a jab. This is about 9% of the age group.

Some of these people could be in both categories.

Although these figures are lower than the remarkably high rates for older people, they are still much higher than vaccination targets for most vaccinations including the annual seasonal flu jab.

For comparison, the uptake target for the flu jab in people over 65 is 75% and this year it managed 79%.

The Public Health Scotland figures for Covid vaccinations suggest that of the 1.35 million people in Scotland aged over 60, just 7,500 people have not had their first dose. That is about five people in every 1,000.

Covid vaccine coverage in some JCVI groups actually exceeded initial estimates, with 361,028 front-line health staff receiving the jab despite only 230,000 being thought to qualify when the figures were first announced in December.

However, take-up among some front-line social care staff appears to be low at just 82.2%.

Public Health Scotland, using the Scottish Social Services Council staff register, estimated the number of staff in this sector to be 96,936. If that figure was correct it would suggest that 17,000 social care staff have not taken up the vaccine offer.

How does the Scottish rate compare with England and Wales?

Image source, PA Media

The latest weekly figures from NHS England show a similar pattern to Scotland.

Take-up among the older age groups is generally very high - above 95%.

The 50 to 54 age group is slightly lower at 88.8%.

In England, just 80% of JCVI category 6 people - those under 65 with an underlying condition or unpaid carers - have received their first dose of the vaccine. While rates for social care workers were down at 80.4% in elderly care homes and even lower for other care staff.

The figures in Wales were similar but slightly lower with just 91.2% of those aged 60 to 64 taking the first dose, 88.6% of those aged 55 to 59 and 86% of those 50 to 54-year-olds.

The figure for those under 65 with a health condition was 84.5%, just a little lower than the figure for Scotland.