Fewer than half of people aged 50 and over in Worcester have received an extra dose of the coronavirus vaccine, new figures suggest.

NHS England data shows 18,317 people aged 50 and over in Worcester had received a booster jab or third vaccine dose, registering only 46 per cent as of November 21.

Adults in the over-50s age group have been eligible for a top-up dose of the Covid-19 vaccine since mid-September, following the launch of the NHS national booster jab campaign.

Booster jabs are available for people in eligible groups who had their second dose at least six months ago, while third primary doses are offered to people with severely weakened immune systems.

Deputy chairman of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation, Professor Anthony Harnden, said: “Experts have been looking at extending boosters to the under-40’s, and whether the time interval between the second and third doses should be cut with the arrival of the Omicron variant.

"I think it’s almost inevitable that we’re going to see many, many more cases than we’ve seen before and the key question is whether this virus has a transmission advantage over the Delta, which is the prevalent virus at the moment."

Other groups that are currently able to receive a booster include frontline health and social care workers and adults aged 16 and over with underlying health conditions that put them at higher risk of contracting coronavirus.

UK scientists are set to announce an expansion of the booster programme, as the first cases of the newly discovered Omicron variant have been confirmed across England and Scotland.

A spokesperson for the Herefordshire and Worcestershire CCG said: “In light of Monday’s JCVI announcement, we’re awaiting an updated rollout plan from the NHS which will tell us when we can offer boosters to these newly eligible patients.

“Until then, we’d ask patients not to try and get a vaccine unless they’re at least six months from their second jab, and in one of the existing eligible categories, as we can’t yet give you a vaccine until the new protocols are in place.”

Last weekend, Worcester City PCN administered almost 2,000 boosters and first doses at two pop-up vaccination centres at Warndon Hub and at St Johns House Medical Centre.

Patients in the current cohort are being encouraged to come forward and anyone over the age of 60 should get their vaccinations as soon as possible.


You can get boosters and flu jabs on a walk-in basis this week at Worcester Racecourse during their opening hours, www.worcestercity-pcn.co.uk/f