image caption“Another shot in the arm for Britain!” declares the Daily Mail, as it reports that a fourth vaccine has shown “stunning” trial results. US biotech firm Novavax said its jab had been shown to be 89.3% effective in phase three clinical trials. The government has already ordered 60 million doses of the vaccine, which will be produced on Teesside if it is approved by the UK’s regulator, the paper says.
image caption“Union vacc” is the headline for the Sun, which also points out that the Novavax vaccine will be produced in the UK. It says the jab, which has also been shown to be effective against the variant which was first found in Kent, has been hailed by Prime Minister Boris Johnson.
image captionMeanwhile, the prime minister has said he is confident the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine works for over-65s after Germany decided not to use it for that age group, the Times reports. UK regulators have acknowledged “uncertainty” about the effects in the older population because of a lack of data – but have insisted it has been shown to be safe and there is no good reason to think it will stop working once people reach 65, the paper says.
image captionThe row over vaccine supply to the EU continues to dominate many of the front pages. The Guardian says millions of doses could be blocked from entering the UK within days, after Brussels warned it had to react to shortages in its member states. The European Commission has announced plans to give national regulators the power to reject export requests, which the paper says raises concerns about the flow of the Belgian-produced Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine to the UK.
image captionThe EU’s vaccination plan is “nearing crisis point”, according to the Financial Times, after several regions suspended inoculations because of a shortage of jabs. Authorities in Paris and Lisbon have stopped or delayed giving first doses, following a warning from the Madrid region on Wednesday that it would pause its campaign for 10 days, the paper reports.
image captionMeanwhile, the Metro says Scotland’s first minister has “given Boris Johnson the needle” by offering to help the EU over the vaccine row. Nicola Sturgeon has insisted she would defy him by giving European leaders details of the UK’s supply contracts – despite the prime minister warning that would threaten national security, the paper reports.
image captionThe Daily Telegraph says Ms Sturgeon has been accused of “showboating” and “attempting to curry favour” with the EU by promising to publish the data. By revealing how many doses Scotland expects each week, the first minister hopes to counter claims she is failing to roll out the vaccine quickly enough in her country, the paper reports. It says the UK government has refused to publish details of how much vaccine supply it expects from manufacturers each week, partly because of concern EU nations could use this to put pressure on companies to divert doses.
image captionDespite the tensions over supply, Health Secretary Matt Hancock has pledged that the UK will have enough doses to give priority groups their second jab on time, according to the i. More than 11% of the UK population have now received their first dose, the paper reports.
image captionThe Daily Mirror focuses on its campaign to prioritise teachers for the Covid vaccine in the next phase of the rollout, saying the public backs the idea. It cites a poll where people were asked who should be next in the queue after the most vulnerable, with teachers topping the list.
image captionThe Daily Express uses its front page to urge more help for students, which it describes as the “forgotten victims of Covid”. With restricted teaching and no discount on tuition fees, students have “felt the full brunt of the pandemic”, from mental health struggles to financial difficulties, the paper argues.
image captionFinally, the Daily Star reports that experts have found monkeys could speak if they wanted to but “can’t be bothered”. The paper sees some similarities with what it describes as the “cowardly custards” in Mr Johnson’s cabinet.