WEALTHY Brits are offering doctors thousands of pounds to skip the queue to get the Covid vaccine, a report says.
Several private docs have revealed that people “with almost infinite money” are desperate to get the jab after losing relatives to the killer disease.
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Rich people are offering large sums of cash to private doctors to skip the vaccine queue, medics have revealedCredit: AFP or licensors
However, the vaccine is currently only available on the NHS although private medics are hoping to get the jab by April.
Dr Roshan Ravindran, owner of clinic Klnik in Wilmslow, Cheshire, told The Sunday Times that he had been offered £2,000 for the jab.
He said: “People inquiring of it often have had a relative who has passed away – the virus hasn’t been selective.
“The poor and rich have all been affected and all lacked control. And so now what people are looking for is a degree of control.”
He continued: “It’s priceless. I have people with almost infinite money, who would do anything because they’ve had relatives pass away with Covid.”
But Dr Ravindran has told rich patients they will have to wait until private companies get their hands on the vaccine which he believes will happen within months.
He said: “We’ll probably start getting a private supply from April.
“People will come up with a vaccine the Government won’t buy – then flood the market.
“Every drug company is trying to come up with a vaccine.”
The medic said he believes some private firms will charge as much as £20,000 to vaccinate wealthy clients.
Dr Neil Haughton, of the Independent Doctors’ Federation, blasted the prospect of rich people paying to skip the queue.
He said: “We are in a national emergency. If some people were able to jump the queue by paying for it, there’d be a national outcry.
“We are being very clear that there’s absolutely no way round the system – much to their annoyance, sometimes.”
Yet, Dr Mark Ali, of the Private Harley Street Clinic, believes private clinics can help the NHS roll out the jabs once the vulnerable have been inoculated.
He said: “It is important that elderly and vulnerable people receive the vaccine first, but once that process is up and running, private practice may have a crucial part to play in mass roll-out.”
However, Dr Ali did confirm that he had received similar requests from wealthy patients asking to be vaccinated early.
In the UK, the Government pre-ordered more than 355 million doses of seven of the leading vaccine candidates.
And the country became the first in the western world to begin vaccinating people earlier this month after approving the Pfizer/BioNTech remedy.
The Oxford-AstraZeneca jab is expected to be given the green light within days.
Meanwhile, the UK could be free of lockdowns by February – after Government officials drew up a list of 15 million vulnerable Brits who need the vaccine first.
As of yesterday, 24million people in the south and east are now in the country’s strictest Tier 4, with non-essential shops closed and household mixing banned.
According to the Mail on Sunday, it’s hoped that once the elderly and vulnerable receive the vaccine – hopefully by the end of February – the NHS wouldn’t be at risk of being overwhelmed if the virus spread through the greater population.
That could mean tough lockdowns finally end.