Eligible groups urged to take up offer of covid booster amid signs of “possible autumn wave”
Public health officials are urging people in eligible groups to take up the offer of a Covid-19 booster vaccine.
It comes as community transmission, hospitalisations and deaths from Covid-19 have increased in recent weeks.
The Covid vaccine is the most effective way to prevent severe illness from Covid-19. Protection from previous Covid-19 vaccinations does reduce over time and therefore it is important that people get their vaccination when invited.
Last week over 100,000 people in Wales chose to protect themselves by having their Covid-19 booster jab when they were invited.
However, there are still people who haven’t attended their vaccine appointment or have postponed it.
Public Health Wales is now urging all those who are eligible for the vaccine to come forward to help protect themselves and others from the virus.
Pregnant women, people aged 50+, those with a long-term health condition, and frontline health and social care workers are among those who are eligible for the free, safe and effective Covid-19 vaccine.
Also eligible for the booster are:
- People who live in a care home
- People with a learning disability
- People with severe mental illness
- People who live with someone who has a weakened immune system (from 6 months of age for flu and 5 years of age for the COVID-19 vaccine)
- Carers aged 16 and over
- All staff working in care homes for older adults
Invitations for the Covid booster will be sent out by post by the local health board.
Dr Christopher Johnson, Interim Head of the Vaccine Preventable Disease Programme for Public Health Wales, said: “Although it is too early to say for certain, we are currently seeing the possible early signs of an autumn wave of Covid-19. While the proportion of severe infections is much lower compared to other stages of the pandemic, this pattern still remains concerning.
“While we have all been getting used to living with Covid, and while vaccination and overall population immunity are helping to keep serious illness at bay for most people, it is important that we do not become complacent.
“Everyone eligible for the booster vaccine can make a significant contribution to slowing down transmission of Covid, protecting themselves, their community and the NHS, by taking up the offer of a vaccine. Even if people are busy or have other plans, it is important to prioritise getting your booster when your appointment letter comes.
“It’s also vital that those who are eligible take up the offer of a flu vaccine, to help protect themselves and others this winter.”
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