NEARLY two-thirds of Cheshire’s adult population have now had their Covid-19 vaccine, new data shows.

The statistics, from NHS England, show that to April 4, 388,487 residents have had their first dose of a coronavirus vaccine — out of a population of 596,446 — representing 65 per cent of the county’s over-16s.

Additionally, 96.8 per cent of the county’s over-50 have been jabbed once — a region-leading figure.

It comes as Cheshire NHS chiefs have said that the AstraZeneca vaccine is safe, following a decision by regulators to tell under-30s to get an alternative shot.

Clare Watson, accountable officer for the NHS Cheshire clinical commissioning group (CCG), said: “The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation have made a statement in terms of concerns of unusual blood clots. The European Medicines Agency (EMA) say those blood clots are very rare.

Winsford Guardian: How protection levels in over-50s differ in Cheshire. Data: NHS EnglandHow protection levels in over-50s differ in Cheshire. Data: NHS England

“Clearly, the benefits continue to outweigh the risks. 79 clots [were found] out of 20 million doses [delivered].

“Although that’s a concern, the benefits outweigh the risks. The AstraZeneca roll-out will not be halted in the UK. There has been a change in clinical advice in under-30s in that they should be offered an alternative vaccine.

Winsford Guardian: How Cheshire's protection compares to others in the regionHow Cheshire's protection compares to others in the region

“If you do have concerns, please speak to the people where you are going to get vaccinated. We will do everything we are required to do in terms of national and international guidance on this.”

Ms Watson also said that the CCG would release more information on the plan to vaccinate those aged 18-49 early next week.