Wait for invitation for Covid-19 booster jab, Suffolk's health bosses say as they confirm booster vaccines won't be available at walk-in clinics
People across Suffolk have been told to wait for invitations for booster Covid-19 jabs - and won't be accepted at walk-in clinics.
The Government confirmed a booster jab would be available from this month at the recommendation of the Joint Committee for Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI).
On Friday, health bosses in Suffolk confirmed that the third jab, which will be the Pfizer vaccine, will be offered by invitation only and people would not be accepted at walk-in vaccination centres.
The jabs should only be taken six months after the last dose.
It will follow the original priority cohorts used at the start of the vaccination programme last year. That includes care home residents, those aged 50 and over working down from oldest to youngest, frontline health and care workers, clinically vulnerable people and their household contacts.
However, the Local Outbreak Engagement Board gathering of council, health and police chiefs on Friday confirmed that people will be able to have their flu vaccination alongside a booster jab for Covid-19.
Melanie Craig, chief officer with Norfolk and Waveney Clinical Commissioning Group, said: "We are vaccinating in order of clinical priority again, just as we did at the start of the vaccines,
"Critically, there has to be a six month gap between your second dose and third, but again we are asking people to wait until they are invited and not to contact their GP. This is not something we are offering walk-ins for, it will be by invitation only."
Health chiefs have acknowledged that some people will be anxious to get a third dose, but stressed the current vaccinations already continue to offer a good level of protection.
Public Health Suffolk director, Stuart Keeble, said: "The booster is being put in place to boost that protection but even so people still have protection up to this point as well.
"It still provides relatively good protection with regard to hospitalisation and deaths. We need to boost in those individuals but at the same time people are still covered and the vaccine will do the job."