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Spring Covid-19 booster programme to provide additional protection for older residents and the severely immunosuppressed

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People who are 75 and older, and those aged 12 and older who are severely immunosuppressed, will be able to book a top-up booster appointment six months after their last dose as part of the national Spring Booster programme.

Dr David Vickers, medical director, Cambridgeshire Community Services NHS Trust (which runs the large scale vaccination centres) said: “People in these groups are at higher risk of developing severe Covid-19 so we’re encouraging them to have a Spring Booster six months after their last dose to increase their protection.

“Eligible people will be contacted by the NHS to invite them to book an appointment for their Spring Booster in the coming weeks. We’re asking people to please wait to be contacted and not to walk-in to our vaccination centres for their Spring booster as staff will not be able to vaccinate them. Those who are eligible because they are immunosuppressed will need to bring a letter from a GP or their hospital specialist confirming their eligibility to their vaccine appointment.”

A nurse prepares a Covid vaccination. Picture: PA (55606719)
A nurse prepares a Covid vaccination. Picture: PA (55606719)

Once contacted, eligible people can book their Spring boosters via the National Booking Service or by ringing 119 (free of charge).

Dr Gary Howsam, chair of the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Clinical Commissioning Group added:

“We know vaccines give significant protection against severe illness from Covid-19 and our vaccination teams continue to do an amazing job delivering the largest vaccination programme in NHS history.

“Like the rest of the country, we are unfortunately seeing Covid-19 cases rising across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough. I strongly urge anyone who is eligible to book this top-up booster when they are contacted.

“And it’s never too late for those who haven’t yet had their first, second or (if you were immunosuppressed at the time you had these) a third dose of the vaccine, or any other non-Spring booster. For these, simply walk-in to a local vaccination centre or book online via the National Booking Service.

“Whilst no longer a legal requirement, we also need people to continue to help reduce the spread of the virus by wearing face coverings, washing hands for 20 seconds with warm, soapy water and avoiding crowded spaces.”

Anyone who has received a Covid-19 vaccine abroad is encouraged to register that vaccination with the NHS so that it can be added to their NHS vaccine record and Covid-19 Pass. Overseas vaccination validation appointments can be booked through the Overseas Vaccination Validation Service on the NHS website.

Those who have recently recovered from Covid should still come forward for their vaccination, as having had the virus does not give the same levels of protection. Anyone over 18 who has had Covid will need to wait four weeks before having any dose of the vaccine, or 12 weeks for those aged 12 to 17.

Those aged 12 and over who are immunosuppressed includes people who have had or have:

A blood cancer (such as leukaemia or lymphoma)

A weakened immune system due to a treatment (such as steroid medicine, biological therapy, chemotherapy or radiotherapy)

An organ or bone marrow transplant

A condition that means you have a very high risk of getting infections

A condition or treatment your specialist advises makes you eligible for an additional dose

Large scale vaccination centres are open seven days a week 8.30 am to 4 pm and some late evenings at the following locations:

· Horsefair Shopping Centre, Wisbech, Cambs PE13 1AR

· The Grafton Centre, Cambridge CB1 1PS

· The Eatons Community Centre, Eaton Socon, St Neots PE19 8ES

· The Oaktree Centre, 1 Oak Drive, Huntingdon PE29 7HN

· Queensgate Shopping Centre, Peterborough PE1 1NT

· Chesterton Indoor Bowls Centre, Logan’s Way, Chesterton, Cambridge CB4 1BL

Further information including later evening openings is available at www.thevaccinators.co.uk

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