People under 50 in England urged to get free Covid boosters | corona virus

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People aged 49 and under in England are being urged to come forward for their free Covid boosters if they have not yet received their full set of injections.

The NHS has said that Sunday 12 February will be the last day people in this age group can visit a vaccination site for their primary dose, while hundreds of thousands of appointments for booster vaccines will be available.

After this date, the vaccine will be offered only to people at risk of severe disease as recommended by the Joint Committee on Immunization and Immunization.

Next week 2,800 sites nationwide open, with 391,000 appointments available before the program is scaled down. The NHS said that so far 15,000 people had booked the Covid vaccine for next week.

Around 17.3 million people were given a booster jab during the winter and a total of 144.5 million doses have been delivered across the UK since the start of the pandemic.

The Health and Social Care Secretary, Steve Barclay, and the NHS Director of Immunization and Screening, Steve Russell, urged people to take their last chance to get the vaccine.

Russell said: “There is just one week left of the autumn booster campaign and so if you are eligible for a booster but have not yet taken your latest dose, please do so before the end of next week.

“Whether you’ve taken a previous dose or had a Covid attack, we know a booster is the best way for you and your loved ones to maintain protection against serious illness from Covid, so while it’s available please make the most of the offer Take advantage and give yourself both protection and peace of mind for the year ahead.”

Barclay said: “Our hardworking NHS staff and volunteers have done an incredible job getting vaccines up in arms, and they stand ready to boost your immunity and keep you and your loved ones safe.”

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Coronavirus infections in the UK have fallen for the fourth week in a row, and are at levels last seen at the beginning of last autumn.

However, infections are not occurring in all age groups in England, with increases in primary and secondary school children and 35 to 49-year-olds.

The recent drop in the number of Covid patients in hospital has also stalled, as health experts said there were “worrying” signs the numbers could rise.

According to the Office for National Statistics, a total of 941,800 people in private households in the UK were likely to have COVID-19 in the week ending 24 January, down 15% from the previous week’s 1.1 million.

This is the lowest UK total since the week ending 14 September 2022.

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