The Government has laid out a plan to give out booster doses of the covid vaccine to all islanders over the age of 18 by the end of January.
Throughout December, priority will be placed on islanders in the roughly 18,500-strong group they have classified “higher risk”, which includes:
Islanders under the age of 40 will start be invited for their boosters in January, starting with those in the 35 to 39 bracket in the first week.
The expansion of the vaccination programme follows UK vaccine experts’ advice and the emergence of the Omicron variant.
The Government said that it would no longer be offering the flu vaccine at Fort Regent in order to give more covid boosters – though islanders in at-risk flu groups can still get a free flu jab from GPs and pharmacies.
An additional 6,000 appointments have gone live today, with next available appointments from early next week.
Deputy Medical Officer of Health, Dr Ivan Muscat, commented: "A booster dose for Islanders aged 18 and over, as well as a second dose for young people aged 12-15 years old, will help to increase our level of protection against covid this winter, and in particular the Omicron variant. While we are yet to have a confirmed case of Omicron on Island, we do expect the variant to reach us, and getting vaccinated is the most important way to reduce its impact on our lives.
"A booster dose of the Pfizer vaccine is shown to substantially increase antibody levels and will provide Islanders with the best possible protection, as immunity from the first and second doses begins to wane."
Pictured: Dr Ivan Muscat, Deputy Medical Officer of Health.
He continued: "The Medicines and Healthcare Regulatory products Agency (MHRA) have supported the JCVI's recommendation to decrease the dose interval for boosters from six to three months. The MHRA's monitoring shows that covid-19 vaccines continue to be safe and effective, and the MHRA continue to carefully review all the data. Their robust surveillance programme includes monitoring safety data for young people as well as adults.
"If you are a young person who is eligible for a second dose of the vaccine or an adult who is eligible for a booster dose, I urge you to book your appointment as soon as it is available to you. Equally, if you have not yet received a first dose of the vaccine, please do book an appointment; it's not too late to start protecting yourself."
35 to 39 years old
|Monday 3 January|
30 to 34 years old
|Monday 10 January|
25 to 29 years old
|Monday 17 January|
18 to 24 years old
|Monday 24 January|
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