JCVI interim advice: potential COVID-19 booster vaccine programme winter 2021 to 2022
In the situation where social mixing and social contact return towards pre-pandemic norms, it is expected that winter 2021 to 2022 will be the first winter in the UK when SARS-CoV2 will co-circulate alongside other respiratory viruses, including seasonal influenza virus. Seasonal influenza and SARS-CoV-2 viruses have the potential to add substantially to the ‘winter pressures’ usually faced by the NHS, particularly if infection waves from both viruses coincide. The timing and magnitude of potential influenza and SARS-CoV2 infection waves for winter 2021 to 2022 are currently unknown.
In the view of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), the primary objective of a 2021 COVID-19 booster programme is to reduce the occurrence of serious COVID-19 disease.
Stage 1. The following persons should be offered a third dose COVID-19 booster vaccine and the annual influenza vaccine as soon as possible from September 2021:
- adults aged 16 years and over who are immunosuppressed
- those living in residential care homes for older adults
- all adults aged 70 years or over
- adults aged 16 years and over who are considered clinically extremely vulnerable
- frontline health and social care workers
Stage 2. The following persons should be offered a third dose COVID-19 booster vaccine as soon as practicable after stage 1, with equal emphasis on deployment of the influenza vaccine where eligible:
- all adults aged 50 years and over
- adults aged 16 to 49 years who are in an influenza or COVID-19 at-risk group. (Refer to the Green Book for details of at-risk groups)
- adult household contacts of immunosuppressed individuals
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