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Health update: Booster vaccines, second jabs and more!

A message from Julie Webster, Wirral’s Director of Public Health

Dear residents,

COVID-19 booster vaccinations are starting to rollout across the North West this week as the NHS vaccination programme enters a new phase ahead of winter.

If you’re eligible, you may have received a text or letter from the National Booking System which will direct you to sites outside of Wirral. If you are happy and willing to travel to these, brilliant! But please be assured there is a local system to provide people with the booster so you don’t need to travel out of area if you don’t want to or can’t.

Wirral GP practices are currently working through the list of eligible people and will be inviting them in as soon as possible. Priority is currently being given to elderly people and those living in care homes.

Those who are eligible for a booster (and have had their second vaccine at least six months ago) include:

•             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 and adult carers

•             adult household contacts of immunosuppressed individuals

If you have received an invitation from the National Booking System or NHS Vaccines, you will be able to book an appointment online at www.nhs.uk/covid-vaccination. Those who can’t go online can book by phoning 119. Alternatively you can wait to be contacted by your GP practice who will offer you an appointment at one of Wirral’s local GP led vaccination centres.

As we move into the Winter months, it’s vital that we do all we can to protect ourselves and our loved ones from COVID-19 and keep ourselves well – especially if we’re in a vulnerable group.

That’s why I am urging all people to come forward for their booster vaccine as soon as they become eligible and receive their letter or text invitation. Booster jabs are effective for topping up protection for people who have had both of their jabs and are at least six months after their second dose.

And please remember, first and second doses are still available to people who have not yet had their COVID-19 vaccine.

While the majority of locals have had their jab(s), there are still more than 45,000 eligible people in Wirral who are not vaccinated against COVID-19 according to recent data.

If you’ve had your first jab, that’s great, but you’re not done there. You need two doses for maximum protection from serious illness or hospitalisation.

You only have to wait 8 weeks between doses now so, if you’re eligible for your second jab please book in or visit a walk-in clinic now. Details of walk-in clinics in Wirral are available and regularly updated here: http://www.wirralccg.nhs.uk/CovidVaccineWalkin

Thanks again for reading and take care.

Julie.