Covid-19 Vaccination - Spring Boosters
NHS COVID vaccines have saved countless lives, kept tens of thousands of people out of hospital, and helped us to live with the virus without fear or restrictions.
But the virus is still with us and making thousands of people ill every week, and protection against COVID (either from catching the virus or from a previous vaccination) fades over time.
So, this spring, the NHS is offering a further vaccination to those at highest risk of severe illness from COVD.
Those who can get a spring vaccination include people aged 75 and over (by 30 June 2023), people with a weakened immune system, and residents of care homes for older adults.
Vaccinations in care homes for older adults begin from the week of 3 April. Other eligible people can book their spring vaccine from 5 April, and appointments start from 17 April.
The NHS will write to people to remind those eligible that they can get the vaccine, but bookings can be made at any time.
The last date people will be able to book a spring booster will be 29 June, with the last spring vaccinations on offer the following day, 30 June.
Dr Jeeves Wijesuryia talks about Spring Boosters
If you are eligible
If you are eligible, you can make a booking by using the NHS App or visiting:
If you can’t get online, you can call 119 for free.
Some areas also offer convenient walk-in vaccinations – to find out what is available, visit:
Find a walk-in COVID-19 vaccination site
Find a walk-in COVID-19 vaccination site to get a COVID vaccination appointment without needing an appointment.
Like some other vaccines, levels of protection may decline over time. Vaccinations are being offer to those as greatest risk this spring to help them to maintain strong protection from becoming seriously ill or needing to go to hospital if they catch COVID-19.
Following JCVI guidance, the following groups of people will be offered a booster this spring:
- adults aged 75 and over
- residents in a care home for older adults
- people aged 5 and over who have a weakened immune system.
You can book an appointment from 5 April, with the first appointments to take place on 17 April. They will be on offer until 30 June, and 29 June is the last day that you can book.
If you’re eligible for a vaccination this spring, you will receive a text message, email, NHS App message or letter from the NHS when it’s your turn to come forward.
The JCVI has advised the following vaccines may be used in the 2023 spring programme:
- Pfizer-BioNTech bivalent
- Moderna bivalent
- Sanofi/GSK monovalent (beta variant)
- Novavax monovalent (wild-type variant) – only for use when alternative products are not considered clinically suitable
All of the available vaccines provide good protection against severe illness from COVID-19. Further information is available at www.nhs.uk/covidvaccination.
All COVID-19 vaccines offered in England have been approved for use by the independent Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).
These vaccines have met the MHRA’s strict standards of safety, quality and effectiveness. There are checks at every stage in the development and manufacturing process, and continued monitoring once it has been authorised and is being used in the wider population.
Each of the vaccines are tested on tens of thousands of people across the world. They are tested on both men and women, on people from different ethnic backgrounds, and of all age groups.
No, all COVID-19 vaccines you’ll be offered are highly effective and provide a strong booster response. When you attend your appointment, the NHS will offer you a safe, effective vaccine.
The JCVI has not yet issued its final advice on 2023 autumn/winter vaccinations. When these are available, they are likely to be offered to people who are at increased risk from COVID, for example due to their age or a health condition.
If you become eligible for an autumn/winter vaccination later this year, the NHS will let you know when it’s your turn to come forward. Please wait to be contacted by the NHS about this.
Please see this UKHSA page for information about why some chemicals – called adjuvants – are used. This includes squalene, the shark-derived oil in the VidPrevtyn Beta vaccine manufactured by Sanofi-GSK.
We know that some people will not be able to receive the Sanofi-GSK vaccine, for example for reasons of faith, because it contains an ingredient derived from shark. For people in this situation, an alternative COVID vaccine will be available.
As COVID vaccines are intramuscular, some Muslim scholars believe that they do not invalidate fasts. However, we are aware that other Muslim scholars believe fasts may be invalidated by receiving the (Sanofi-GSK) vaccine that contains animal ingredients, due to potential nutritional value of the oil. You may therefore wish to seek further advice from your local Imam or request to receive one of the other vaccines that does not contain shark-derived oil.