Wales will become the first country in the UK to offer coronavirus vaccines to everyone in its first nine priority groups by Sunday, First Minister Mark Drakeford has said.

The UK-wide priority list covers care home residents and staff, frontline health and social care workers, clinically extremely vulnerable individuals, people aged 16-64 with underlying health conditions, and people aged 50 and older.

At Thursday’s Welsh Government press briefing, Mr Drakeford said 57% of adults in Wales have received their first dose of the Covid-19 vaccine, while almost one in five have received their second jab.

“Take-up is excellent – in over half the groups we count it is more than 90%,” Mr Drakeford said.

“This is a truly remarkable effort and is down to the hard work of thousands of people who are working tirelessly on the NHS frontline across Wales to make this happen. I want to thank each and every one of them.

“And it is because of those efforts that I am able to say today that we will meet our next vaccine milestone early.

“By Sunday we will have offered a vaccine to everyone in the first nine priority groups – that’s everyone over 50, all adults with an underlying health condition and a great many unpaid carers.

“By Sunday, a minimum of 75% of those in each priority group will have received a first vaccination.”

Public Health Wales (PHW) said on Thursday a total of 1,443,885 first doses of the Covid-19 vaccine have been given in Wales, an increase of 16,702 from the previous day.

The agency said 449,538 second doses have also been given, an increase of 11,601.

There were a further 188 cases of Covid-19 in Wales, taking the total number of confirmed cases to 209,532.

PHW reported two further deaths, taking the total in the country since the start of the pandemic to 5,509.