Spring Covid booster jab: how to book 4th NHS coronavirus vaccine, when is it available - and who is eligible?
People over the age of 75 and those who are immunosuppressed in England are now being invited to book an appointment
A fourth Covid vaccine is being offered to around five million people in England this spring.
But who is eligible for a Covid jab booster and why is it being offered?
Here’s what you need to know.
Who is eligible for another Covid booster vaccine?
Covid booster vaccines are now being offered to millions of people in England, with more than 470,000 people coming forward for the jab since the rollout began last week, NHS England said.
A total of 5.5 million people are expected to be given the jab and more than 600,000 people will be invited to book their dose this week.
The vaccine will be available to:
- care home residents
- those aged 75 and over
- the immunosuppressed aged 12 and over
The NHS Covid-19 vaccination programme will contact people when it is their turn to be vaccinated again.
Once they have an invitation, they will be able to book their appointment through the National Booking System either online or by calling NHS 119.
Local NHS teams will also be administering the vaccine in care homes.
Which vaccine will people receive?
Eligible adults will be offered either the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, with any eligible people aged between 12 and 18 offered the Pfizer vaccine.
Why is a booster being offered?
Health and Social Care Secretary Sajid Javid said: “Our phenomenal vaccination programme has saved countless lives and built a wall of defence which has allowed us to learn to live with Covid.
“Following the massive success of the rollout so far, we are now offering over-75s and the most vulnerable a spring booster dose to top up their protection against this virus.”
NHS chief executive Amanda Pritchard added: “We have protected millions of people at speed thanks to the efforts of our staff, aided by volunteers. They will once again rise to the next challenge.
“There is no need to contact the NHS – when you are eligible for your ‘spring boost’ of protection, we will be in touch so you can book your appointment at one of hundreds of vaccination sites across the country.”
Is there a booster available in other parts of the UK?
In Scotland, spring booster jabs were being offered from Monday 7 March.
The booster in Scotland is being offered at least 24 weeks after the last vaccine dose to:
- adults aged 75 years and over
- residents in care homes for older adults
- individuals aged 12 years and over who are immunosuppressed
Spring Covid boosters began being rolled out in Wales in the middle of March, with the over-75s, older care home residents and individuals aged 12 years and over who are immunosuppressed invited for their boosters.
In Northern Ireland, the spring Covid booster will also be available to the same eligible groups, with the country’s Department of Health saying it expects the spring booster vaccinations to be completed in April and May.
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