Boosters commence for 40 to 49 year olds and second doses for 16 to 17 year olds
The booster programme is being expanded to cover those aged 40 to 49 from today, 22 November 2021.
This follows Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) advice that, in addition to those aged over 50 years and at higher risk from coronavirus, all adults aged 40 to 49 years should be offered an mRNA booster six months after their second dose, irrespective of the vaccines given for the first and second doses. Booster vaccination should be with either the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, or the Moderna vaccine, as previously advised.
The JCVI is also advising that all 16 to 17 year olds who are not in an at-risk group should be offered a second dose of the Pfizer vaccine, 12 weeks or more following the first vaccine dose (different timing applies to those who have had COVID-19 infection). Booking also opens on 22 November.
This advice is in addition to the existing offer of 2 doses of vaccine to 16 to 17 year olds who are in ‘at-risk’ groups, as described in the Green Book.
Booking a booster jab
The public can use the National Booking Service to book an appointment for a booster dose if it's been 152 days (5 months) since their 2nd dose and they are in one of these groups:
- aged 50 and over
- aged 16 and over with a health condition that puts you at high risk from COVID-19
They will be offered appointment dates from 182 days (6 months) after the date of their 2nd dose.
The National Booking Service is expected to be updated from 22 November 2021 to allow those aged 40 to 49 to book a booster jab.
There is separate guidance on boosters for frontline social care workers in England: Standard operating procedure - how frontline care staff can access COVID-19 booster vaccinations
Efforts are being made to increase vaccination of those eligible for a third dose (as opposed to a booster). These are individuals with a weakened immune system, who are able to have a third dose at least 8 weeks after their second dose. The dosage may be slightly different from a booster, depending on the vaccine. More details.
Guidance on approved vaccines and list of countries and territories with approved COVID-19 proof of vaccination for travel to England is being updated regularly. See the current list.
The NHS App has been updated to show when a person has received a COVID-19 booster jab vaccination in the Travel section, to assist Britons travelling to countries where a third vaccination is required. More news.