The Prime Minister has admitted the rollout of Covid vaccines in care homes "needs to be stepped up" after an MP suggested just 15 per cent of Barnet's care homes have received vaccinations.

Boris Johnson told the House of Commons he wants the care home vaccination process to be accelerated in England - elderly residents and their carers are at the top of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation’s priority list for receiving Covid-19 vaccines.

The Prime Minister was responding to a question posed by Chipping Barnet MP Theresa Villiers, who raised concerns that she was aware of only 13 care homes out of 85 in Barnet which have had vaccinations.

She said: "I received a worrying call this morning from the chairman of Barnet Council’s health overview and scrutiny (HOS) committee indicating that it may be that only 13 care homes in the borough have received vaccinations.

"Will the Prime Minister intervene to make sure the frail elderly and their carers in Barnet get the vaccinations they need as soon as possible?"

Mr Johnson replied: "Yes, I will. I have said that I want to have maximum transparency, and I want to see an accelerated roll-out of vaccination in care homes.

"So far, I believe that 10 per cent of care home residents and 14 per cent of care home staff have received the vaccine, but that clearly needs to be stepped up."

The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) has said it is aiming for all care home residents to have been offered vaccines by the end of January.

The Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine was first rolled out to care homes in mid-December, at first to seven homes as part of a pilot and then to homes with more than 50 registered beds.

It is expected that the approval of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine on December 30 will speed up the process as it does not pose the same logistical challenges.

For example, it does not need to be stored in such cold conditions and can be split up into smaller packs.

The first doses of the Oxford vaccine are expected to reach care homes this week.

Speaking after the Commons meeting, Ms Villiers said: "The call from Cllr Alison Cornelius, chairman of the HOS Committee, was very concerning but I am pleased the Prime Minister has made it clear he will find out what has happened and that we need to step up to vaccinate all the vulnerable in our communities as quickly as possible.

"I am hoping this is just a delay in reporting and that the care homes figure is actually better than 13, but we must remain vigilant and ensure everyone in the top four priority groups - residents in care homes, over 70s, health and care workers and the clinically extremely vulnerable get vaccinated by mid-February."