Spring Covid booster jab to be offered to over 75s and vulnerable this week

20 March 2022, 00:00

Sajid Javid said the spring booster jab will help "top up their protection against this virus".
Sajid Javid said the spring booster jab will help "top up their protection against this virus". Picture: Alamy

By Sophie Barnett

The elderly and vulnerable will be offered another coronavirus booster jab from this week to maintain their protection against the virus, the NHS has announced.

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Care home residents, people who are 75 and over, and the immunosuppressed aged 12 and over will be contacted from this week to come forward for their spring booster jab.

Health Secretary Sajid Javid said the top-up jab would help those at the highest risk of serious Covid maintain a high level of protection against the virus.

Around 600,000 people will be invited to book their dose this week, with a total of around five million people expected to be given the jab, the health service 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," Mr Javid said.

"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."

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People will be contacted when it is their time to come forward for the vaccine and, 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 jab in care homes.

Adults will be offered either the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, with any eligible people aged between 12 and 18 offered the Pfizer vaccine.

NHS chief executive Amanda Pritchard said: "The NHS Covid-19 vaccination programme has not stopped in its efforts to protect people from coronavirus - around five million of the most vulnerable people will be eligible for a spring dose and from tomorrow, we will start giving eligible groups their additional top up in protection.

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"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."

All remaining Covid restrictions were scrapped at the end of February including the legal requirement to self-isolate after testing positive.

Boris Johnson hailed the move a "moment of pride" as he axed all remaining measures.

The government also scrapped mandatory Covid vaccinations for NHS and social care staff in a dramatic U-turn.

The mandate was revoked on March 15 - meaning NHS staff no longer need to be vaccinated by April 1, and care home staff who lost their jobs as a result of the policy will be able to work once more.