People in the Midlands are being urged to come forward for their COVID-19 booster vaccination before the offer ends on Sunday.
In the last week there have been a surge in bookings as people have come forward to get this vital protection.
Sunday 12 February is the last day of the autumn booster campaign and will also be the final day that 16 to 49-year-olds who are not considered at risk will be able to get a booster following updated Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) advice, which recommended the offer ends in line with the current campaign.
The JCVI is recommending moving to a more targeted offer to those considered to be at risk of serious illness – as seen with the autumn campaign – and will set out further advice on future campaigns in due course.
It has already advised that there should be another autumn vaccination campaign later this year, as well as a potential spring campaign for the most vulnerable.
More than 3.3 million people have so far come forward for a booster throughout this winter.
Cases of COVID-19 continue to circulate in the community. There are currently 1,034 patients in the Midlands with COVID-19 in hospitals with 1,231 cases in the East Midlands and 1,641 in the West Midlands recorded over the last seven-day reporting period.
Roz Lindridge, the NHS England director responsible for overseeing the vaccination programme across the Midlands, said:
“There are now just a few days left of the autumn booster campaign and so if you are eligible for a booster but have yet to take up your latest dose, I would urge you to do so before Sunday’s deadline.
“The seasonal booster gives vital protection against the newer Omicron variants as well as the earlier COVID variants. So, while cases continue to circulate, the risk of serious illness is reduced thanks to the booster.
“Whether you have had previous doses or a bout of COVID, we know that a booster is the best way to maintain protection against serious illness from COVID for yourself and your loved ones, so please do make the most of the offer while it is available and give yourself both protection and peace of mind for the year ahead.
“Our hardworking NHS staff and volunteers have done an incredible job getting jabs into arms, and they’re on hand to top up your immunity and keep you and your loved ones protected.”
The vaccine has been rigorously tested to the highest safety standards and is continuously monitored for safety. It has been tested on tens of thousands of people across the world – men, women, people of different ethnicities and ages – as well as given to millions more.
People can book their latest COVID-19 dose through the national booking system or by calling 119. You can also get a dose of the COVID-19 vaccine from a walk-in site without an appointment. People can find their nearest walk-in sites on the NHS website.