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COVID-19 boosters to be offered to all over 50s this autumn

Published on 20/07/22 at 10:42am

All those aged 50 and over will be offered a COVID-19 booster vaccine this autumn, to top up their immunity and lower the risk of severe illness.

Younger people who are more vulnerable to severe disease, as well as health and social care staff, will also receive the booster.

The updated advice comes from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), which advises governments in England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland. It says that the booster should be offered to health and social care staff, those aged 50 and over, and carers over the age of 16. The booster should also be offered to people over five whose health puts them at greater risk, including pregnant women, and people over five who share a house with somebody with a weakened immune system.

Prof Anthony Harnden, the deputy chairman of the JCVI, said: "The Covid-19 boosters are highly effective at increasing immunity and, by offering a further dose to those at higher risk of severe illness this autumn, we hope to significantly reduce the risk of hospitalisations and deaths over the winter."

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: "Today we have confirmed the next phase in our booster programme to keep our defences strong over autumn and winter.

"Vaccines were our way out of this pandemic, and now they will make sure COVID-19 can never haunt us in the same way again."

Details of the rollout have not yet been confirmed, but it is thought that immunisation will start with the oldest and most vulnerable from September.

Lina Adams

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