Ninety-year-old granny makes history as she receives Britain’s first Covid-19 jab

Grandmother Margaret Keenan has received Britain’s first coronavirus jab.

The 90-year-old from Coventry made history just after 06.30 today (Tuesday).

The hopefully life saving vaccine was administered by nurse May Parsons.

Britain’s NHS is the first in the world to roll out the  Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine.

In trials it proved to be 95 per cent effective.

May Parsons, a nurse at Ms Keenan’s local hospital in Coventry, administered the vaccine.

Mrs Keenan is a former jewellery shop owner.

She has two children and four grandchildren.

She celebrates her 91st birthday next week.

After the inoculation she said:

“I feel so privileged to be the first person vaccinated against Covid-19, it’s the best early birthday present I could wish for because it means I can finally look forward to spending time with my family and friends in the New Year after being on my own for most of the year.

“I can’t thank May and the NHS staff enough who have looked after me tremendously, and my advice to anyone offered the vaccine is to take it – if I can have it at 90 then you can have it too.”

Sir Simon Stevens, NHS England CEO said the vaccine programme was a “remarkable achievement”.

He added: “Less than a year after the first case of this new disease was diagnosed, the NHS has now delivered the first clinically approved Covid-19 vaccination – that is a remarkable achievement.

“A heartfelt thank you goes to everyone who has made this a reality – the scientists and doctors who worked tirelessly, and the volunteers who selflessly took part in the trials.

“They have achieved in months what normally takes years.

“My colleagues across the health service are rightly proud of this historic moment as we lead in deploying the PfizerBioNTech vaccine.

“I also want to thank Margaret, our first patient to receive the vaccine on the NHS.

“Today is just the first step in the largest vaccination programme this country has ever seen. It will take some months to complete the work as more vaccine supplies become available and until then we must not drop our guard.

“But if we all stay vigilant in the weeks and months ahead, we will be able to look back at this as a decisive turning point in the battle against the virus.”

NHS nurse Ms Parsons, speaking at University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust, said:
“It’s a huge honour to be the first person in the country to deliver a Covid-19 jab to a patient, I’m just glad that I’m able to play a part in this historic day.

“The last few months have been tough for all of us working in the NHS, but now it feels like there is light at the end of the tunnel.”


About the Author

Philip Braund spent 16 years at the Daily Mirror as a reporter and news editor before moving to ITV. He was the series producer of the ground-breaking investigation programme The Cook Report, Managing Editor at ITV's Millbank Studios, and Head of News at ITV Central. He has won national and regional Royal Television Society awards for documentaries.

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