IN a bid to keep Brits fighting off Covid, a booster jab programme has been announced.
To protect the more vulnerable groups against the virus, a rollout of a third jab is set to begin within days.
So, when will you get your booster shot?
More than 30 million Brits are set to get a Covid booster vaccine.
The rollout has a specific order, and you may not be first in the queue, so it's important to know where you stand.
All those under the original priority groups one to nine will be eligible for a third shot, as early as six months after their second dose.
So at the moment only those over 50 and over 16s with an underlying health condition, and health and social care workers will be offered a booster.
And only a portion of those groups will be eligible for a booster, as a large chunk won't be more than six months on from their second jab.
People will only be invited to have the third dose if they are in the "sweet spot" half a year on from being double jabbed.
So even if you are in the groups able to be offered a booster, you have to wait to be called up.
The jab list, determined by the JCVI (Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation) places the elderly and care workers at the top of the list for a vaccine.
Calum Semple, a member of the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage), said boosters would “give an extra leg up” to the most vulnerable.
He told BBC Breakfast “it’s not just going to be coronavirus that’s causing us trouble” this winter, and third doses “make a difference for a few people that are frail and elderly and have high risks”.
Who will get booster shots?
The JCVI is advising that booster vaccines be offered to those more at risk from serious disease, and who were vaccinated during Phase 1 of the vaccine programme (priority groups 1 to 9).
- 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
- adult household contacts of immunosuppressed individuals
As most younger adults will only have got their second Covid vaccine by late summer, they are unlikely to benefit from a booster right now.
But after all groups one to nine have had their boosters, the decision may be taken to invite everyone to have a top up shot.
However this isn't likely to happen soon, with the younger groups thought to still have high immunity levels.
Professor Jonathan Van-Tam, Deputy Chief Medical Officer, said this week: "The aim of the game is to stay on top of things."
At a Downing Street press conference, he said vaccines had been “incredibly successful” and had so far prevented an estimated 24 million Covid-19 cases and 112,000 deaths.
"But we also know that this pandemic is still active," Prof Van-Tam warned.
"We are not past the pandemic, we are in an active phase still."
He said "double jabs [Covid boosters and flu shot] can start now, subject to availability".
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