Britain said on Monday that it will provide more COVID-19 booster doses to the elderly, care home residents, and immunocompromised individuals as part of a campaign to teach people how to live with the condition without legal constraints.
Sajid Javid, Britain’s health minister, said he would follow the advice of the country’s vaccination advisors and that all four nations of the United Kingdom will provide the additional injections.
“We know that immunity to COVID-19 deteriorates with time. That is why we are providing a spring booster to individuals who are at a higher risk of serious COVID-19 infection in order to ensure they retain a high degree of protection “Javid made the announcement in a statement.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson has cited success in the rollout of COVID vaccines and boosters as a key factor in re-opening England’s economy, and is due to set out further details of his plan to live with COVID later on Monday.
Britain’s Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunization (JCVI) said it advised offering the extra shots on a precautionary basis, and Javid said those eligible would be offered a vaccine about six months after their last dose.
The JCVI also said it anticipated a further booster programme in the autumn of 2022 would also be needed, though it was too early to set out details of such a programme.
“The JCVI will continue its rolling review of the vaccination programme and the epidemiological situation, particularly in relation to the timing and value of doses for less vulnerable older adults and those in clinical risk groups ahead of autumn 2022,” JCVI Chair for COVID vaccination Wei Shen Lim said.