Spring Covid booster campaign gets under way next week
Care home residents will be the first to receive the spring Covid-19 booster jab from Monday.
Around five million people in total are eligible for a booster up until the end of June, including those aged 75 and over and anyone aged five and over who is immunosuppressed.
While the care home programme of boosters rolls out across England, all other eligible people will be able to book their jab online from April 5, with the first appointments available the week commencing April 17.
Millions of people will be sent their initial invitations through the NHS app, where they can also book their appointment.
Text messages and letters will be sent to those without the app or who are not regularly using it.
NHS director of vaccinations and screening Steve Russell said: “As a society we are learning to live with Covid but, for many, it is still a virus that can cause serious illness and hospitalisation, and so it is still really important that those at greatest risk come forward and boost their protection in the coming weeks.
“There are still around 8,000 people in hospital with Covid, according to the latest data, and the NHS has now treated more than one million Covid inpatients since the pandemic began.
“So if you are over 75 or you have a weakened immune system, please come forward as soon as possible to book a Covid vaccine this spring so you can enjoy summer with peace of mind.”
Health Secretary Steve Barclay said: “Our successful vaccination programme has helped us all to live with Covid, saved thousands of lives and protected the most vulnerable from serious disease.
“We’re committed to giving vulnerable people the protection they need from the virus, so I want to encourage those who are 75 or over or who have a weakened immune system to book their booster jab from Wednesday.
“It’s quick and easy and will give the protection you need for the months ahead.”
The offer for anyone to get a first Covid jab will end on June 30, with more targeted seasonal campaigns likely in the future.
Earlier this year, the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) said the spring booster campaign can include vaccination with the Pfizer, Moderna, Sanofi/GSK jabs.
The Novavax jab will be available for use only when alternatives are not considered clinically suitable.
Children under 12 will be offered a children’s formulation of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine.
The vaccine people receive will depend on local supply.