Every eligible Newcastle care home resident has been vaccinated against coronavirus in what experts are hailing as "the start of a long road back to normality".
The doctor leading the project has confirmed that all care homes in Newcastle, comprising almost 2,000 residents in over 50 homes, and most of the staff looking after them have been given the jab.
The programme saw seven teams made up of a doctor, nurse and administrator delivering the vaccination to each home around the city, completing the job in less than a fortnight.
Newcastle is believed to be the first city in England to reach the milestone with its rapid vaccine rollout.
Teamwork, planning and communication were the keys in getting the doses out to over 50 homes in the city in such a short time frame.
Chief operating officer from Newcastle GP Services, Rebecca Haynes, described the two-week rollout as "incredibly challenging but an absolute privilege."
She added: "Care homes, their staff and their residents have been impacted deeply by the pandemic, they have all made great sacrifices and being able to provide them with the protection and a glimmer of hope has been incredibly rewarding."
Despite the city’s vaccination success, Mrs Haynes warned: "We are not out of the woods yet and I would urge people to follow the guidance in full, stay at home unless essential and help stop the spread of the virus."
Nick Forbes, the leader of Newcastle City Council, said: "In less than two weeks we have protected the most vulnerable people in our communities, providing the residents and their families with a sense of reassurance and hope they have longed for.
"It is also a relief for care home staff who have given so much during this pandemic, prioritising the health and care of the residents they work with."
"This is the start of the long road back to normality for our city, a glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel."
GP Dr Jane Carman said none of the residents refused to have the jab.
She told the BBC's Today programme: "Everybody was delighted to have it."
Care home workers still waiting for their vaccination are being offered slots at the Centre For Life mass vaccination hub.
UK vaccination sites, in pictures
UK vaccine rollout sees significant step up
The NHS is on course to reach 1.5 million doses by the end of this week as over four million Britons have had their first dose of coronavirus vaccine so far.
The Foreign Secretary, Dominic Raab, pledged that every adult in the UK will be offered a first dose of a vaccine by September.
Meanwhile, Health Secretary Matt Hancock announced that over half of all over 80s have now been vaccinated.
He tweeted that jabs to over 70s can now be offered:
More than half of all over-80s have had their #coronavirus jab, so I’m really pleased we can now offer jabs to the over 70s & the clinically extremely vulnerable.
Total focus on getting all the most vulnerable groups jabbed by 15 February. https://t.co/fyjn8dbFW0
— Matt Hancock (@MattHancock) January 18, 2021
The national medical director for the NHS said that expanding the vaccination program to over-70s means that an additional five million people will now be eligible for a Covid-19 jab.
Professor Stephen Powis told Good Morning Britain: "We are now able to expand the vaccination programme beyond those top two priority groups - that's the care home residents, care home staff, the hospital staff and the over-80s - down to the over-70s.
"From today those over 70 years old will be invited in to our vaccination centres."
The Prime Minister's official spokesman said those over 70 will receive invitations to get vaccinated "shortly" but that the rollout will vary across the country.
He said: "The important point is that this allows areas that have already vaccinated a majority of those over 80, care home residents, frontline NHS and care home staff to keep the momentum up and to start giving it to further-at-risk people."
Nadhim Zahawi, minister for vaccine deployment, told Sky News that the government will "absolutely" begin pilots for 24/7 vaccination centres before the end of the month.
He announced on twitter that the NHS were averaging up to 140 jabs a minute and that the volunteer army are "knocking the ball out of the park":
We are averaging 140 jabs a minute. The @NHSuk family @RoyalAirForce @RoyalNavy @BritishArmy The volunteer army are knocking the ball out of the ball park. Lots done, much more to do. Massive thank you 🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽💉💉💉
— Nadhim Zahawi (@nadhimzahawi) January 17, 2021
The British army are helping to set up 80 new Covid vaccination centres across Scotland.
Archbishop of Canterbury and Labour MP receive first vaccination
Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby has received his first Covid-19 vaccination and is urging others to follow his example when they are eligible:
As a volunteer member of the @GSTTnhs chaplaincy team, I was given the first shot of the #Covid19Vaccine this weekend.
Please get the jab when you’re invited. And please do everything you can to support staff across the NHS who are doing so much to keep us safe. pic.twitter.com/OA5v7xM462
— Archbishop of Canterbury (@JustinWelby) January 18, 2021
Margaret Hodge, Labour MP for Barking, has also just received her first jab.
She said: "When you are sent a vaccine appointment, please make sure you go."
Mrs Hodge tweeted the announcement Monday morning:
I have just had my first jab, it was quick & easy! Big thank you to the brilliant team of NHS staff & volunteers, who work tirelessly every day!
When you are sent a vaccine appointment, please make sure you go. Vaccination is the best way to keep you and your community safe. pic.twitter.com/0RVQCR1lOJ
— Margaret Hodge (@margarethodge) January 18, 2021
Act of kindness leaves NHS nurses 'in tears'
A Stoke-on-Trent nurse was left "lost for words" after a group of sixth form students donated pizza for the healthcare workers at their local critical care unit.
Critical care nurse Tina Waltho said: "At a time when healthcare staff feel so low and deflated, responses like this remind us that we are supported.
"The nurse who had been in charge on the day shift was in tears. She had barely eaten all day and was a little emotional."
Ms Waltho's post has been retweeted thousands of times and has caused an outpouring of praise:
So this evening we had a delivery of pizzas from an unknown source to critical care at @UHNM_NHS . After some investigation we found out that a group of sixth form students had clubbed together to get them for us. Honestly lost for words at the kindness 💗 thank you pic.twitter.com/071EwLl2Jm
— Tina T (@TWaltho) January 13, 2021