Two million people in England eligible for their third vaccine will receive an invitation this week as the NHS continues to roll out the booster programme

Vaccine being administered to older man tirachard

This week, the NHS will be sending out two million more invitations to those who are eligible to book their COVID-19 vaccine boosters. 10 million people are currently eligible for the booster 6 months after their first dose, including:

  • those living in residential care homes for older adults
  • all adults aged 50 years or over
  • frontline health and social care workers
  • all those aged 16 to 49 years with underlying health conditions that put them at higher risk of severe COVID-19 (as set out in COVID-19: the green book, chapter 14a), and adult carers
  • adult household contacts of immunosuppressed individuals.

The booster programme began last month, with seven and a half million people already being invited to book their vaccine boosters and more than five million already receiving it. Amanda Pritchard, the Chief Executive of NHS England, has praised the recent success of the programme, tweeting on Sunday that ‘Yesterday was the biggest day yet for Covid booster jabs: more than 325,000 people getting vital protection. In the past three days over 800,000 people have had their booster jab.’

NHS Medical Director Professor Stephen Powis further stressed the importance of the booster vaccines, saying: ‘Winter is coming and infection rates are rising and so it’s now really important that everyone receiving their invite for a booster vaccine from the NHS this week books in at one of the convenient vaccinations sites around the country offering this crucial, additional protection.’

This news comes at a time when COVID-19 cases are rising, as last week’s seven-day average of 39,216 is a 9.2% increase from the previous week’s 35,901 according to the government’s latest figures. Professor Adam Finn, member of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation, has suggested that the vaccination programme will not be enough to control the virus’ spread. As Professor Finn told Sky News’ Trevor Phillips: ’They have an effect on [the virus’ spread], but they’re not by themselves going to be enough at the present time to keep the spread of the virus under control.’

For more information and up-to-date clinical guideline summaries relating to COVID-19, see our COVID-19 hub.

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