THE PROGRESS made by the vaccination rollouts in Ireland and other European countries could be scuppered unless nations with surplus supplies share them around, a charity has warned.
Unicef UK say that western Europe could face a fresh wave of Covid-19 if the virus is allowed to linger, because it increases the likelihood of mutations developing which could be resistant to the vaccines.
The charity estimated that Britain could afford to give away around 20% of its vaccine stock and still meet its target to inoculate every adult by the end of July.
They warned that all the progress made over the past four or five months could potentially be "reversed" if supply isn't shared, and a deadly mutation develops.
Countries with advanced vaccination programmes, such as the UK, the US and Israel, have been encouraged to give spare vaccines to countries with slower rollouts, particularly as these countries have already vaccinated many - if not all - of their most vulnerable citizens.
As international travel begins to reopen, only having domestic resistance to the virus may come back bite us, the charity argues.
Unicef UK director of advocacy, Joanna Rea, said: "The UK has done a fantastic job in rolling out Covid-19 vaccines to more than half of its adult population and we should all be proud of what has been achieved.
"However, we can't ignore that the UK and other G7 countries have purchased over a third of the world's vaccine supply, despite making up only 13% of the global population - and we risk leaving low-income countries behind.
"Unless the UK urgently starts sharing its available doses to ensure others around the world are protected from the virus, the UK will not be safe from Covid-19.
"Our vaccine rollout success could be reversed and the NHS could be fighting another wave of the virus due to deadly mutations."