The NHS has launched the next phase of its Covid vaccination programme for people eligible for a spring booster jab today.
The NHS said immunosuppressed patients were able to show they were eligible by providing either:
- a letter from their GP team or specialist inviting them for a vaccine; or
- a hospital or GP letter about their medication or treatment; or
- a prescription or medication box with their name and date on it.
Over-75s are also able to book in for the booster, following advice from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) which said spring jabs should be offered to those most vulnerable to Covid-19 as a precautionary measure.
Around five million people are eligible for the booster and the NHS said it would be contacting over 600,000 people to invite them to book their jab.
Dr Nikki Kanani, deputy senior responsible officer for the NHS Covid Vaccination Programme, said: ‘Sadly, we are still seeing large numbers of people seriously unwell in hospital with Covid so it remains vital that those most at risk come forward when they are invited to do so.
‘The response so far from the public to the largest and most successful vaccination programme in NHS history has been incredible, with more than nine in 10 people aged 75 and over getting their initial booster.
‘The NHS Covid vaccination programme is once again ready to get people protected, so when you are invited please come forward for your spring dose.’
Hundreds of sites including GP surgeries, community pharmacies, vaccination centres and hospital hubs will be delivering the jabs, although PCNs can only participate if they have capacity.
NHS England has said that GP-led Covid vaccination sites will be able to continue delivering jabs until September if they have ‘sufficient capacity’, although some may be asked to suspend the service if they are not delivering ‘value for money’.
Health and Social Care Secretary Sajid Javid said: ‘Spring boosters will help top up the immunity of the elderly and the most vulnerable to ensure they are protected and will help us continue to live with this virus.’
It comes amid a new spike in Covid cases in England, with a 47% rise in symptomatic patients