Demand for covid spring boosters and vaccinations for healthy 5-11 year-olds has been strong in Lincolnshire over the last couple of weeks and NHS teams at the county’s various vaccination sites have been kept extremely busy.
As of 4th April, 13,846 second booster vaccinations (that is fourth or spring boosters and fifth doses for immunosuppressed people) have been administered and people keep coming forwards in considerable numbers, particularly those aged 75 and over.
“We’ve been really pleased with the response so far, particularly from older people,” comments Julie Humphreys, Head of Clinical Services, NHS Lincolnshire CCG. “It is very much like when we first started vaccinating more than a year ago, the older people in our communities came forwards in large numbers then and they’re doing exactly the same now for the spring booster.”
As throughout the vaccination rollout, people are still being encouraged to book in for their spring booster, either online via the National Booking System or by calling 119. In addition, some GP practices are taking part and contacting patients to offer them an appointment.
As with the previous boosters, eligibility for a spring booster will be 182 days after your last vaccination and in Lincolnshire the vaccination teams are offering either Moderna or Pfizer , both of which boost well and have been given to millions of people in the UK.
“Pre-booking an appointment remains the best way to guarantee you get your covid vaccination when it’s most convenient for you. Bear in mind that we continue to run the ‘evergreen’ offer of firsts, seconds and booster jabs for anyone who’s not had them, so it makes our lives a little bit easier if people book, since we have a better idea of who’s coming to see us and when,” explains Julie.
“Just as we’ve said from the beginning, getting vaccinated is the best way to maximise your protection against covid, and this is still the case. We know that immunity to covid wanes over time and this is why we’re offering the spring booster to those at higher risk of covid, including people aged 75 and over, residents in care homes for older adults, and people aged 12 and over who are immunosuppressed.
“Please remember to be patient with our teams when you come for your vaccination. They are doing everything possible to ensure the experience is as positive and convenient for you as possible. Sometimes you may have to wait, especially if you come to one of our pop-up vaccination sessions, which are run on a ‘first come, first served’ basis’.”
The vaccination teams have also been encouraged by the numbers of 5-11 year-olds being brought in for their covid vaccinations by parents and guardians.
“We have worked particularly hard to ensure the experience for our younger patients is child friendly with separate clinics dedicated to vaccinating 5-11 year-olds,” explains Julie. “Children will be given the Comirnaty (Pfizer) COVID-19 vaccine – each vaccine is a third of the dose that is given to older children and adults. A child aged 5-11 years-old needs two injections of the vaccine usually 12 weeks apart.
“The vaccine has been tested to make sure it is as safe as possible. Don’t forget, we have been using vaccinations for decades to protect our children from potentially serious diseases, such as measles, flu, meningitis and mumps, and the covid vaccination is one more vaccine helping to protect them from illness.”