National booking service opens for over-40s to get booster Covid-19 jab and second dose for over-16s
People aged over 40 can now book their booster jab, if eligible, and 16- and 17-year-olds their second dose.
Following new advice from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), the vaccination programme has been extended, with over-40s eligible for boosters and young people aged 16 and 17 able to book a second jab.
From Monday (November 22), those eligible for a booster can book an appointment – five months after their second dose – to be vaccinated as soon as they reach the six-month mark.
New data this week highlighted how important the booster jab is. The first real-world study on the effectiveness of booster vaccines by the UK Health Security Agency shows top-up jabs boost protection back up to over 90% against symptomatic Covid-19 in adults aged over 50.
The findings show that two weeks after receiving a booster dose, protection against symptomatic infection in adults aged 50 and over was 93.1% in those with Oxford/AstraZeneca as their primary course and 94% for Pfizer-BioNTech.
A total of 14 million people in the UK have already received their booster vaccines.
People can book by calling 119 or get vaccinated at hundreds of walk-in sites across the country six months after their second dose without an appointment. Those eligible can use the NHS online walk-in finder to locate the most convenient site.
Health and Social Care Secretary Sajid Javid said: “Getting your Covid-19 booster vaccine is the best way to keep yourself and your loved ones safe this winter and will help reduce the pressure on the NHS.
“While the Government is continuing to monitor a wide range of data to ensure the country remains protected, we have very sadly seen a surge in cases in parts of Europe.
“The most important thing we can do to stop a similar rise in this country is get the jab – so please get your vaccines as soon as you can so we can keep the virus at bay.”