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Care home residents eligible for early COVID booster jab

COVID-vaccine

Care home residents are among the vulnerable groups being offered a booster jab one month early “where this makes operational sense” in new government guidance.

The new updated guidance says care home residents who may have received their second doses at different times can be vaccinated in the same session, as long as it’s been five months since their second dose.

Health and Social Care Secretary Sajid Javid said: “We are making great progress with the booster rollout and I want to thank everyone working so hard to get jabs in arms.

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“This updated guidance will ensure healthcare professionals have the necessary flexibility in the booster programme, allowing more vulnerable people to be vaccinated where it makes operational sense to do so – including our loved ones in care homes.”

The latest evidence from SAGE shows that protection against symptomatic disease falls from 65%, up to three months after the second dose, to 45% six months after the second dose for the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine, and from 90% to 65% for the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine. Protection against hospitalisation falls from 95% to 75% for Oxford/AstraZeneca and 99% to 90% for Pfizer/BioNTech.

Early results from Pfizer show that a booster following a primary schedule of the same vaccine restores protection back up to 95.6% against symptomatic infection.

The news came as the UK delivered over 7m booster jabs, after a record breaking week of more than 2m being administered in the last seven days.

A total of 7.3m people have received their booster jab in the UK. Additionally, 45.7m have received two doses (79.4%) and 49.9m people have received one dose (86.7%).

Vaccines Minister Maggie Throup said: “COVID-19 booster vaccinations are extremely important in keeping people and their loved ones safe this winter, and this updated guidance will ensure the programme can adapt to best protect certain groups.

“I encourage everyone eligible for their jab to book theirs as soon as possible and secure this protection.”

Professor Martin Green OBE, CEO, Care England, said: “As the largest and most diverse representative body for independent providers of adult social care, Care England supports as much flexibility as possible in the vaccine rollout. There was a deadline of 1 November and we would have expected that every care home has had an offer if not a first visit to deliver boosters, if they haven’t I would urge them to get in touch with their GP or primary care network as soon as possible in order that they can meet the needs of each individual resident.”

 

 

 

 

 

Tags : COVID-19vaccination
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The author Lee Peart

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