COVID booster jabs are now being offered to eligible people in the region.
The NHS Covid vaccination programme in Coventry and Warwickshire is inviting people aged 75 and over and those who are immunosuppressed to book appointments as the biggest vaccination programme in health service history enters a new phase.
The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation has advised a spring jab should be offered to those most vulnerable to covid-19 as a precautionary measure.
The NHS will invite people to arrange a jab through the national booking service when it is their turn. It can be accessed online at nhs.uk/covidvaccine or by calling 119.
Dr Sarah Raistrick, GP and Clinical Chair of Coventry and Warwickshire Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “Covid is still very much around and we are seeing the impact in our local hospitals. Vaccines give us a good level of protection but that protection wanes after time and that’s why it’s so important to keep yourself protected with booster vaccinations.
“Vaccination is the best way to protect yourself and others from Covid-19 and we are urging anyone who is eligible for their jab to come forward as soon as possible.”
Recent research from the UK Health Security Agency has shown the NHS booster programme has helped prevent around 157,000 hospitalisations since mid-December.
NHS health chiefs are expecting high uptake of spring boosters among people aged 75 and over after 4.5million of them got their top up jab over autumn and winter and have recruited additional call handlers for the 119 service to help people book their vaccine appointment.
Calls to 119 are free from mobiles and landlines. Lines are open every day from 8am to 8pm, and 119 can provide support in 200 languages.
Local NHS teams will be contacting care homes in their patch as they have done previously to arrange for spring boosters for people who are eligible and have been invited.
The NHS has made it easier than ever for immunosuppressed people to get their boosters – they can now show they are eligible by providing either a letter from a GP team or specialist inviting them for a vaccine, a hospital or GP letter about their medication or treatment, or a prescription or medication box with their name and date on it.