Coronavirus: 35,000 group four Kiwis have already had COVID-19 vaccine more than a month before their turn

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern received her first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine on Friday - three months ahead of everyone else in her age group. 

And she's not the only group four Kiwi who's jumped the queue - more than 35,000 people who are not yet scheduled for a vaccine have managed to grab a jab.

Ardern says she's jumping the queue for good reason. 

"I need to be a role model and just demonstrate that it's safe, that it's effective and that it's really important that everyone is vaccinated when they have the opportunity."

Jumping the queue is not just reserved for VIPs, though.

The rollout sequencing specifies that only groups one, two and three should be vaccinated at the moment, while the wider population - group four - isn't supposed to begin until July 28.

But data released to Newshub shows 35,242 people in group four have already received their first dose and 4416 in group four are already fully vaccinated.

National's COVID-19 spokesperson Chris Bishop says given there's such scarce supply of the vaccine, the Ministry of Health "really needs to make sure that we are doing it in the right order".

The Ministry says while those in group fours are not eligible for another six weeks, some places are occasionally vaccinating them to minimise wastage and to vaccinate people who roll up to appointments with group three family members. 

It says there also may be some instances of vaccinators incorrectly coding people as group four.

Joining the chorus of concerns, the Government's old mate Winston Peters - who made a rare media appearance on Australia's Channel 9 - telling them the rollout is too slow and setting the Government a vaccine target.

"We've got to get our rollout running much faster; I think when we get to 80 to 90 percent we'll be safe, so to speak," the former Deputy Prime Minister said.

Until then, the main defence remains managed isolation and quarantine (MIQ). A report released on Friday warns it's here to stay until December 2022.

And it still needs serious work - raising resourcing issues, highlighting that it was being run from spreadsheets rather than systems, and saying the approach taken was like "building the plane as it is flying".

"We certainly did build the plane while we were flying it. I think now we're in the air and what we're trying to do is make sure the plane stays safe, follows its course," says Megan Main, the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment's MIQ spokesperson.

It seems the route to COVID-19 freedom is going to take much longer than we thought.