Queen Elizabeth II, 94, and her husband, Prince Philip, 99, have received their COVID-19 vaccinations, according to Buckingham Palace.
The queen wanted to go public with news of their vaccinations to dispel further speculation or inaccuracies about whether they received it. A household doctor at Windsor Castle administered the vaccines.
When Britain began a historic mass vaccination program Tuesday, with people over 80 among the first in line, the curious wanted to know when the monarchs would be next.
British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab, one of the leaders of the British vaccination program, had told Savannah Guthrie on NBC’s “Today” show that it was unlikely the royals would be vaccinated publicly.
“I’m not sure they will do it on camera, but I’m sure arrangements will be made according to the phased approach that I set out, and like any family, you know, they will have felt the pressures and all the worries that surround this pandemic as well,” said Raab.
The rollout of the vaccine in Britain, the first Western country to tackle the coronavirus with a new, hastily developed vaccine, is being described as the start of the largest mass immunization program in history.
COVID-19 hit close to the royal home last year when Prince William and Prince Charles fell ill with the virus.
Prince Charles, 72, the heir to the British throne, tested positive for the coronavirus after “displaying mild symptoms,” Clarence House, his official royal residence, said in a statement in March.
“The Prince of Wales has tested positive for coronavirus,” the statement said, noting that aside from the mild symptoms, he “otherwise remains in good health and has been working from home throughout the last few days as usual.”
Prince Charles recovered.
In November, it was reported his son, Prince William, contracted COVID-19 in the spring but kept his diagnosis secret to avoid worrying the nation, according to the BBC and other media.
The Duke of Cambridge, 38, second in line to the throne, is believed to have tested positive for the virus in April. William’s apparent diagnosis was revealed as Britain prepared for another national lockdown.
Kensington Palace said it would not confirm or deny William’s April diagnosis.
Contributing: Maria Puente