With coronavirus cases now over 48 million worldwide, scientists have been working around the clock to develop a vaccine.
Now Sir Simon Stevens, CEO of the NHS, has said that two puffs of Covid-19 could be ready by Christmas.
The NHS chief prepared primary care physicians for the vaccine launch in December.
He said: “Our job is just to make sure we are ready, waiting and able to fire the starting gun.
“How confident are we that we can start at least one coronavirus vaccination before Christmas if it were available? I would answer ten out of ten.”
Sir Stevens’ comments come as vaccine chiefs have confirmed that the UK will have 14 million doses of two Covid-19 vaccines by the end of the year.
Kate Bingham, chair of the UK’s Vaccine Taskforce, said the vaccines are already in production and the NHS should be able to start administering them as soon as their use is approved.
The 14 million doses are divided into two vaccines.
Four million doses come from the UK’s leading vaccine candidate developed by the University of Oxford, while 10 million doses are developed by Pfizer in the US.
While the UK is expected to have 14 million cans by the end of the year, Ms Bingham warned that finding enough staff to handle the tidbits may be a problem.
He said: “We will have more vaccines than we can use, that’s my expectation.”
Andrew Pollard, chief researcher at the University of Oxford, also believes there is a “small chance” that the pile will be ready by Christmas.
“I am optimistic that we can reach this point by the end of this year,” Pollard said of the presentation of this year’s trial results.
When asked if the vaccine would be ready by Christmas, he replied: “There is a small chance.”