标签档案: 九月

All over-50s to be offered Covid booster and flu jab from September

All over-50s to be offered Covid booster and flu jab from September
Vaccine watchdog expands autumn booster programme due to uncertainty posed by Omicron sub-variants

All people aged 50 and over are to be offered a 冠状病毒病-19 booster and flu jab this autumn, the government has announced.

一些 26 百万 Britons will be eligible, with over-75s and the most vulnerable expected to start receiving their doses from September, according to the UK Health Security Agency.

Under the guidance outlined by the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), all frontline health and social care workers will also be offered another booster jab, as will those aged 5 至 49 who are deemed clinically at-risk, including pregnant women, and household contacts of people with compromised immune systems.

For people aged 75 and over, this will be their fifth Covid jab, having already received a spring booster. For the over-50s, it will be a fourth dose.

Reformulated Covid-19 vaccines, specific to the Omicron sub-variants, are also expected to be authorised and delivered in the near future, according to Professor Adam Finn, a member of the JCVI.

独立 understands that the JCVI has debated whether the adapted vaccines, once they start to arrive, should be held back until the government has secured enough doses and can offer them to all eligible cohorts, rather than immunising different groups with different variant-specific jabs.

In its interim advice, published earlier this year, the JCVI had initially recommended that everyone aged 65 and over receive an autumn booster jab.

But in light of the threat posed by the highly infectious BA.4 and BA.5 Omicron sub-variants, and the uncertainty that lies ahead with Covid, the committee said it had reconsidered its earlier guidance to lower the age eligibility threshold down to 50.

Professor Anthony Harnden, deputy chair of the JCVI, 说: “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.”

Along with the usual eligible groups, the flu 疫苗 will once again be offered to all adults aged 50 至 64 years and secondary school children in years 7, 8 和 9.

These cohorts will only be invited to come forward for the jab once people aged 65 years and over, pre-school and primary school children, and those in clinical risk groups have received the flu vaccine.

Health officials are concerned that, after two quiet flu seasons, the coming winter could see a surge in infections and hospitalisations caused by the virus, placing greater pressure on the NHS alongside Covid-19.

Dr Mary Ramsay, head of immunisation at UKHSA, 说: “Widening the eligibility for the flu vaccine will help reduce the number of people getting seriously ill and ease pressures on the NHS, particularly during the busy winter period.

“It is also important that everyone eligible for the Covid-19 booster gets the jab when invited, including pregnant women, who are among those at higher risk.

“Having Covid-19 during pregnancy can lead to complications. Getting the vaccine, including a booster, offers the best possible protection for you and your baby.”

The NHS will announce in due course when and how eligible groups will be able to book an appointment for their Covid-19 autumn booster, and when people aged 50 至 64 years old who are not in a clinical risk group will be able to get their free flu jab.