Get boosted to protect you and your family against serious illness this winter

Having your Covid-19 booster jab could be the crucial difference between you and your loved ones becoming seriously ill this winter.

That is the message from NHS leaders in north east London amid concerns that fewer local people are coming forward for vital vaccinations.

So far, more than 1.1 million people across the capital have received an autumn Covid-19 booster jab, with the new bivalent vaccine giving them vital extra protection against the virus. However, uptake in some areas remains significantly lower than last year.

This means many people are now at greater risk of becoming seriously ill – and passing on the virus – as our immunity decreases over time and new variants emerge.

Bookings are opened to everyone aged 50 and over to get their Covid-19 booster and flu vaccines. You can arrange to get your life-saving jabs quickly and easily online at www.nhs.uk/covidvaccine or through the free 119 phone service.

Covid-19 boosters are free and available at many sites, including high street pharmacies, across Barking and Dagenham, City of London, Hackney, Havering, Newham, Redbridge, Tower Hamlets and Waltham Forest.  The flu jab is also being offered at dozens of community pharmacies and GP surgeries.

Diane Jones, Chief Nursing Officer for NHS North East London (NHS NEL), said:

“While Covid-19 is now thankfully leading to fewer deaths, it can still be an extremely serious illness so it’s concerning to see that the number of people coming forward for vaccination is significantly down on last year in north east London.

“Having the virus can be unpleasant and disruptive, leading to having to be off work, missing out on social events, or facing the longer term symptoms of Long Covid which can seriously impact your ability to work and your quality of life.

“For many people this will be their fourth jab. Even if you have had all your Covid-19 vaccinations, or had the virus itself, it is really important you get the booster as your immunity decreases over time and the latest vaccine provides extra protection against newer variants of the virus.”

For more information on the free NHS flu vaccine and Covid-19 booster, and how to get your jabs, visit the winter vaccinations page on the NHS North East London website.

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