Over 70s to be invited for Covid booster jab
Over-70s are being invited to come forward for another Covid jab as the Scottish booster programme gets underway.
Details of the next stage of the jag rollout were published in the government’s autumn and winter vaccination strategy.
The booster jabs will ultimately be available to all adults aged 50 or over, including those living in residential care homes for older adults; frontline health and social care workers; all those aged 16 to 49 years with underlying health conditions that put them at higher risk of severe Covid; and adult household contacts of immunosuppressed individuals.
Letters are currently being sent out offering appointments to the over-70s with appointments due to start next week. The over-50s will be able to book online from late October.
As well as older Scots, the document also sets out plans for administering “top-up” doses to over-12s who have severely suppressed immune systems which have not mounted “a full immune response to Covid-19 vaccination, and therefore may be less protected than the wider population.”
Health secretary Humza Yousaf said: “I would like to thank everyone in Scotland who has come forward for their Covid-19 vaccination so far and of course all those involved in the delivery of the programme. It is testament to their hard work and dedication that more than eight million Covid-19 vaccinations – both first and second doses – have now been administered in Scotland.
“I welcome the latest Audit Scotland report recognising the excellent progress, strong partnership working and planning which has helped us deliver a successful programme. We have taken into account what we have learned so far in drawing up our autumn and winter vaccination strategy.
“The vaccines are highly effective at preventing severe disease, and getting fully vaccinated remains the best way to be protected against the virus.
“In response to advice from the JCVI we are now progressing Scotland’s booster programme. This will give everyone aged over 50 or at increased risk, some further protection.
“I urge anyone who is eligible and not yet vaccinated to book an appointment or attend a drop-in clinic – check NHS Inform or your local board’s website and social media channels for details of how and where to get the vaccine in your area. Likewise, this year more than ever, it is important to get the flu vaccine if you are eligible to ensure maximum protection this autumn and winter.
The new strategy comes after Thursday’s Covid update revealed that 2,911 new cases had been reported in the past 24 hours. There have also been a further 35 new reported deaths.
The number of people in hospital being treated for the virus in hospital is now 998, a slight fall from yesterday's total of 1,020.
Of those being treated in hospital, 74 are in intensive care, three more than the day before.