People urged not to ignore COVID-19 booster invitation – as difficult winter could lie ahead
It’s that time of the year when colds and flu sweep through the nation.
But this year it’s more important than ever to get a booster jab, not only against the flu season but also COVID-19.
Independent pharmacy chain, Well Pharmacy, is urging people not to ignore their COVID-19 booster vaccine reminders, as concerns that people may have ‘covid fatigue’ or believe the virus has simply ‘gone away’ surface.
The next phase of Covid-19 booster vaccination now available, community pharmacies including Well Pharmacy wis playing an integral role in ensuring those who are eligible for a booster get one.
As summer comes to an end, it has never been more important to ensure that we protect ourselves against COVID-19 and the flu virus, warns Well Pharmacy Deputy superintendent pharmacist, George Sandhu.
“People should be offered an appointment for their autumn booster between September and December. If you are eligible for a flu vaccine, you may be able to have them both administered at the same time – if not please do go ahead anyway, you can catch up with the other vaccine later.
He added: “It is important to get your booster appointment booked in as soon as offered it. Although we are now all living with COVID-19, the very best form of protection is to ensure your vaccinations are up to date. As the weather changes and we enter flu season, many of us will be indoors more.
"We know it is in these settings that COVID-19 and other viruses tend to thrive, therefore we must ensure we do all we can to stay on top of coronavirus. For many people, life has returned to normal, but we must not forget that covid-19 is still out there and can impact people differently.
The very best prevention is vaccination, and boosters play a huge part in our COVID-19 fightback.”
Concern also comes following a serious flu outbreak and a high prevalence of COVID-19 seen in Australia, which is an indicator of what the UK can expect. The pharmacy chain has opened the flu vaccination booking page earlier than usual to ensure people can get timely appointments.
With this in mind, and a higher prevalence of respiratory infections expected, getting vaccinated is the best protection for everyone.
COVID-19 is more serious in older people and in those with certain underlying health conditions. The primary objective of the autumn booster programme is to increase the immunity in those at higher risk from covid-19, protecting the most vulnerable and reducing hospital admissions.
To support this, the 2022 autumn booster programme will be offered to the following groups:
residents in a care home for older adults
·care homes staff
·frontline health and social care workers
·all adults aged 50 years and over
·persons aged 5 to 49 years with health conditions which put them at higher risk including pregnant women
·persons aged 5 to 49 years who are household contacts of people with weakened immune systems
·persons aged 16 to 49 years who are carers.
If you are unsure if you should be eligible for a booster, the team at Well Pharmacy will be happy to offer advice, although those eligible should receive an invite between
September and December this year.