The Queen of England and Prince Philip are expected to get the Covid-19 vaccine within the next few weeks, in line with national guidelines on the prioritisation of vulnerable groups.
A source reported that Queen Elizabeth II, 94, and Prince Philip, 99, will not get preferential treatment, but will instead “wait in line” during the first wave of injections reserved for the over-80s and care home residents.
Royal aides said that getting the vaccine is a “personal decision” and “private matter”, but it is understood that the monarch may inform the public after she has received the vaccine, with the Queen’s public backing to work as a counter measure to the anti-vaccination movement and high rate of conspiracy theories surrounding the jab.
The first round of vaccinations are understood to be commencing from 8 December, with those over 80 and frontline healthcare and social care workers being the second priority group after care home residents, meaning the royals could receive the vaccine within weeks.
This would not be the first time the Queen has made public information about immunisations in her family. In 1957, the monarch broke royal protocol amid public fears surrounding the new polio vaccine.
In an attempt to ease concerns, specifically around the potential side-effects, it was made public knowledge that Prince Charles and Princess Anne, then 8 and 6, had received the vaccine. The desired effect was achieved, with public concern eased, and an uptake of the vaccine in the millions.
Prince Charles, 72, the Duchess of Cornwall, 73, and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, both 38, will also find ways to let the public know when they have been inoculated, The Sunday Times reported.
Should the rest of the Royal Family not receive preferential treatment for the Covid-19 vaccine, it would be expected that Prince Charles and Camilla will be in the fourth priority group for the first wave of inoculations.