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Prince Charles confirms he'll have COVID vaccine, but admits he will have to wait his turn

Rebecca Taylor
·Royal Correspondent
·5-min read

Watch: Prince Charles and Camilla visit COVID vaccination centre

Prince Charles has confirmed he will get the coronavirus vaccination when he gets the call, but said he will be “way down the list”.

Charles, 72, and his wife Camilla, 73, visited a COVID-19 vaccination hub at the Gloucestershire Royal Hospital in Gloucester on Thursday afternoon, and met frontline workers giving out the jab.

The Prince of Wales said he would get the injection when it is his turn. As he is in his 70s, he would be classed in the second group to get the jab, once those over 80 and in care homes have received it.

He said: “I think I am way down the list and will have to wait.”

He added: “I think I’ll have to wait for the AstraZeneca one before it gets to my turn. I’m some way down the list.”

It’s not been confirmed if his mother, the Queen, who is 94, has had the vaccine. It’s previously been indicated that it would be a private medical matter.

Prince Charles had coronavirus himself in March, and remarked during the visit that he would have antibodies. However, some research suggests antibodies don’t last very long in some people.

GLOUCESTER, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 17: Prince Charles, Prince of Wales wears a face-mask and protective glasses while speaking with NHS staff involved in the vaccination programme during a visit to Gloucestershire Vaccination Centre at Gloucestershire Royal Hospital on December 17, 2020 in Gloucester, England. Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust is one of the largest non-specialist Trust’s in England, The Trust is the designated Management and Coordination Centre for the roll out of the COVID-19 Vaccination Programme for Gloucestershire. Their Royal Highnesses The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall previously visited Gloucestershire Royal Hospital in June of this year, the first engagement outside of a Royal residence by any Member of the Royal Family following the first national lockdown. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)
Prince Charles wore a covering and protective glasses as he spoke to NHS staff involved in the vaccination programme at Gloucestershire Royal Hospital. (Getty Images)
GLOUCESTER, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 17: Prince Charles, Prince of Wales wears a face-mask and protective glasses while speaking with NHS staff involved in the vaccination programme during a visit to Gloucestershire Vaccination Centre at Gloucestershire Royal Hospital on December 17, 2020 in Gloucester, England. Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust is one of the largest non-specialist Trust’s in England, The Trust is the designated Management and Coordination Centre for the roll out of the COVID-19 Vaccination Programme for Gloucestershire. Their Royal Highnesses The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall previously visited Gloucestershire Royal Hospital in June of this year, the first engagement outside of a Royal residence by any Member of the Royal Family following the first national lockdown. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)
The Duke of Cornwall said he would be getting the jab, but would be way down the list. (Getty Images)

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The Duke and Duchess of Cornwall were given a tour of the hospital by Deborah Lee, chief executive of the Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Trust, and chief nurse Professor Steve Hams, who is managing the vaccination programme.

The royal couple wore face coverings and protective glasses throughout the visit.

They also unveiled a plaque to mark the visit.

Coral Boston, a senior infection control nurse and the hospital trust’s equality, diversity and inclusion lead, said: “I spoke to both of them, Charles especially.

“He talked about the disproportionate numbers of BAME people that Covid affected and how important it was for people of colour to have the vaccination.

“It was great that he acknowledged that.

“It meant such a lot. It’s just a feeling that they appreciate what you do, and the support as well – to have somebody of that level, I was in awe.”

GLOUCESTER, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 17: Prince Charles, Prince of Wales speaking with NHS staff involved in the vaccination programme during a visit to Gloucestershire Vaccination Centre at Gloucestershire Royal Hospital on December 17, 2020 in Gloucester, England. Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust is one of the largest non-specialist Trust’s in England, The Trust is the designated Management and Coordination Centre for the roll out of the COVID-19 Vaccination Programme for Gloucestershire. Their Royal Highnesses The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall previously visited Gloucestershire Royal Hospital in June of this year, the first engagement outside of a Royal residence by any Member of the Royal Family following the first national lockdown. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)
Prince Charles spoke to NHS staff involved in the vaccination programme. (Getty Images)
GLOUCESTER, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 17: Prince Charles, Prince of Wales and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall unveiling a plaque to commemorate their visit to Gloucestershire Vaccination Centre at Gloucestershire Royal Hospital on December 17, 2020 in Gloucester, England. Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust is one of the largest non-specialist Trust’s in England, The Trust is the designated Management and Coordination Centre for the roll out of the COVID-19 Vaccination Programme for Gloucestershire. Their Royal Highnesses The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall previously visited Gloucestershire Royal Hospital in June of this year, the first engagement outside of a Royal residence by any Member of the Royal Family following the first national lockdown. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)
The couple unveiled a plaque to commemorate their visit to Gloucestershire Vaccination Centre. (Getty Images)

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Boston, who received the jab on Thursday, added: “I don’t want to see any more deaths, I don’t want to see any more of my colleagues end up in ITU.

“So it was really important that he acknowledged and knew about the fact that people of colour were dying and people of colour were more affected by the virus.

“It was important for me to have the vaccine. I encourage other people that look like me to have the vaccination.

“If you want to protect your family and support the staff of the NHS, they are dealing with a huge amount of work. It’s hard for them on a day-to-day basis to break the news to a family.

“It’s important that everybody who can have the vaccine has the vaccine.”

GLOUCESTER, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 17: Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall speaking with front line health and care workers involved in the vaccination programme during a visit to Gloucestershire Vaccination Centre at Gloucestershire Royal Hospital on December 17, 2020 in Gloucester, England. Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust is one of the largest non-specialist Trust’s in England, The Trust is the designated Management and Coordination Centre for the roll out of the COVID-19 Vaccination Programme for Gloucestershire. Their Royal Highnesses The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall previously visited Gloucestershire Royal Hospital in June of this year, the first engagement outside of a Royal residence by any Member of the Royal Family following the first national lockdown. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)
Camilla spoke to staff at the hospital, on their second visit there since June. (Getty Images)
GLOUCESTER, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 17: Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall wears a face-mask and protective glasses during a visit to Gloucestershire Vaccination Centre at Gloucestershire Royal Hospital on December 17, 2020 in Gloucester, England. Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust is one of the largest non-specialist Trust’s in England, The Trust is the designated Management and Coordination Centre for the roll out of the COVID-19 Vaccination Programme for Gloucestershire. Their Royal Highnesses The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall previously visited Gloucestershire Royal Hospital in June of this year, the first engagement outside of a Royal residence by any Member of the Royal Family following the first national lockdown. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)
She wore glasses as well as a face covering while she was in the vaccination centre. (Getty Images)

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Since the rollout began, the trust has vaccinated 1,300 staff from NHS organisations including care homes, in the county. Those with underlying health conditions and from BAME communities were among the first to be vaccinated.

Lee said the trust “walked on the shoulders” of Gloucestershire-born physician Dr Edward Jenner, who discovered vaccines.

She told Charles and Camilla: “We feel very privileged to be one of the first centres to mobilise this programme. We’ve all seen the heartache and the sadness that has affected so many of our colleagues and also the community.

“To be at the forefront of the programme that brings hope and to have you with us to enjoy this moment means the absolute world to us.”

Prof Hams said the team was “grateful” to Charles and Camilla for the visit.

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He added: “I was just amazed at how warm and friendly they both were. They were talking about the vaccine, how we store it, how we put it together, the number of people that have been vaccinated, and any side-effects.

“They also spoke about priority groups, and they were really clear in saying that they were not old enough yet, which is good for them. They are not first in the queue just yet.

“I have called this the vaccine of hope because we’ve had a really difficult 12 months and I have personally seen the sadness and the upset and the destruction this awful virus has played on our communities and our colleagues.”

GLOUCESTER, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 17: Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall wears a face-mask and protective glasses while speaking   with front line health and care workers administering and receiving the Covid-19 vaccine during a visit to Gloucestershire Vaccination Centre at Gloucestershire Royal Hospital on December 17, 2020 in Gloucester, England. Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust is one of the largest non-specialist Trust’s in England, The Trust is the designated Management and Coordination Centre for the roll out of the COVID-19 Vaccination Programme for Gloucestershire. Their Royal Highnesses The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall previously visited Gloucestershire Royal Hospital in June of this year, the first engagement outside of a Royal residence by any Member of the Royal Family following the first national lockdown. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)
Staff at the hospital said Charles and Camilla were warm and friendly. (Getty Images)
GLOUCESTER, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 17: Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall wears a face-mask and protective glasses while speaking with NHS staff involved in the vaccination programme during a visit to Gloucestershire Vaccination Centre at Gloucestershire Royal Hospital on December 17, 2020 in Gloucester, England. Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust is one of the largest non-specialist Trust’s in England, The Trust is the designated Management and Coordination Centre for the roll out of the COVID-19 Vaccination Programme for Gloucestershire. Their Royal Highnesses The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall previously visited Gloucestershire Royal Hospital in June of this year, the first engagement outside of a Royal residence by any Member of the Royal Family following the first national lockdown. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)
Camilla spoke to staff involved in the rollout of the vaccine across the county. (Getty Images)

The duke and duchess spent much of the first lockdown in Birkhall, their home in Scotland, but moved back to England when restrictions began to ease.

They have been living at Highgrove House, the duke’s Gloucestershire home, since then, though they have travelled into London for some engagements.

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