London: The U.K has become the first country in the world to approve the Pfizer/BioNTech coronavirus vaccine, paving the way for mass vaccination.
Britain's medicines regulator, the MHRA, says the jab, which offers up to 95% protection against COVID-19 illness, is safe to be rolled out.
The first 800,000 doses will be available in the UK from next week, Health Secretary Matt Hancock said.
People should wait to be contacted by the NHS, he added.
Elderly people, those in care homes and some NHS staff will be prioritised first - although more details on the priority list is due later. The Pfizer/BioNTech jab is the fastest vaccine to go from concept to reality, taking only 10 months to follow the same steps that normally span 10 years.
The U.K has already ordered 40 million doses of the free jab - enough to vaccinate 20 million people.