Speaking at a recent Downing Street press conference, medical director of primary care for NHS England, Dr Nikki Kanani, said: “One big area that I know rightly has been an area of concern, is uptake among people from ethnic minority backgrounds. That feels really personal to me, both as a GP and as a person of colour in our country.

“And this is why two months ago on behalf of the NHS I set out our action plan to boost uptake across people from ethnic minority backgrounds. And I’m pleased to say we have made really significant progress.

“Since we set out our plan in February, uptake from all ethnic minority backgrounds has tripled, outpacing the national average across all ethnicities.

“Take up among people from a Pakistani background is more than four times higher than it was in February and a five-fold increase in people taking up the vaccine, from a Bangladeshi background.

“The progress is a direct result of a combination of NHS teams who know and understand their communities, community and faith leaders who’ve worked really closely with us, practical considerations about Ramadan and other local nuances and really strong high profile backing from high profile people such as Bake Off’s Nadiya Hussein, comedian Lenny Henry and TV star Adil Ray.

“So I want to thank everyone involved in this effort: you’ve saved lives.”