Major change makes getting Covid booster jabs easier ahead of ‘challenging winter’

GETTING your Covid booster jab has been made even easier – with a change made to the booking system.

People eligible for their top-up dose don't have to book in for a slot, they can now turn up to a walk-in centre.

It comes ahead of a winter "like no other", with experts warning it will be "challenging".

Hundreds of walk-in sites across the country are now offering booster vaccines as the NHS ‘Grab-a-Jab’ campaign returns.

From today, Brits can use the NHS online walk-in finder to find the most convenient site to get their top-up without an appointment.

Dr Nikki Kanani, GP and deputy lead for the NHS Covid-19 vaccination programme, said: “NHS staff are making it as easy as possible for people to get their top-up vaccination, and from today people can now go online, find their nearest site and go and get their booster without delay. 

“The booster is not just a nice to have – it is really important protection ahead of what we know will be a challenging winter.

"So if you are eligible, please do check the site finder and go get your jab.”

You can also have your shot done at your GP or a local vaccine centre.

If you are eligible your doctor and/or the NHS will alert you to book in – but you can also do the maths yourself and head to the booking site.

Walk in centres are also offering vaccinations to 12-15 year olds to get their jab, and parents should check the ‘Grab-a-Jab’ website to find their nearest centre, which is updated each day as new sites open up. 

Parents can continue to use the national booking service to book their child’s jab or through the ongoing schools programme.

The NHS is also encouraging the public to use NHS 111 online to get urgent medical advice quickly – ahead of what England’s top doctor says will be a "winter like no other".

Who is eligible?

People who will be invited for a booster six months on from their second dose include:

  • people aged 50 and over
  • people who live and work in care homes
  • frontline health and social care workers
  • people aged 16 and over with a health condition that puts them at high risk of getting seriously ill from Covid
  • people aged 16 and over who are a main carer for someone at high risk from Covid
  • people aged 16 and over who live with someone who is more likely to get infections (such as someone who has HIV, has had a transplant or is having certain treatments for cancer, lupus or rheumatoid arthritis)

Anyone worried about their health should still come forward for care and are still being encouraged to speak to a Pharmacist, GP or call 111 if they need urgent advice.

But NHS 111 online can send people to urgent treatment centres and walk-in clinics, GP surgeries, pharmacies and emergency dental services and, if needed, a call from a healthcare professional.

With more people predicted to suffer from flu this year and hospitals already treating an increased number of Covid-19 patients, NHS 111 online offers an alternative way to get immediate medical advice.

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