Israel is leading the global vaccination race with more than seven per cent of its population already given the jab in the space of nine days.
Some 644,000 people have received a dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech jab in the country of 8.7million, the highest per-capita rate in the world.
The rapid rollout in a country that prides itself on self-reliance comes after Israel’s health minister ordered a 24/7 vaccination drive, hundreds of military medics were drafted in to help with the effort and the country ordered shots from all three of Pfizer, Moderna and AstraZeneca in advance.
Israel is expected to launch a so-called ‘green passport’ scheme in January which means people immunised against Covid-19 will avoid having to quarantine if they travel from abroad or come into contact with a virus patient.
Bahrain is second in the global vaccine table, while Britain is third after handing out 800,000 doses in barely two weeks by Christmas Eve – with the UK set to ramp up its vaccine drive after today’s approval of the Oxford/AstraZeneca jab.
The US has given out the most vaccines outright after injecting more than 2.1million people, but president-elect Joe Biden has criticised delays in the rollout.
Europe started its own programme at the weekend after an EU regulator finally approved the Pfizer jab, with Portugal and Denmark making the fastest progress on the continent so far.