10 March 2022
Eligible vulnerable Islanders can book their spring booster from today, with appointments available from tomorrow, Friday 11 March.
Spring boosters are currently being offered to the following vulnerable groups as advised by the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI):
- all Islanders aged 75 and over
- immunosuppressed Islanders aged 12 and over
- residents in care homes for older people
Vulnerable Islanders are being offered a spring booster now due to waning immunity since their last vaccination, and the associated increased risk of developing severe illness if they catch COVID-19.
Islanders aged 75 and over who are not resident in a care home or considered immunosuppressed are being asked to book their spring booster on www.gov.je/vaccine or by calling the Coronavirus Helpline on 0800 735 5566 if they need assistance with booking an appointment.
Over the next couple of weeks, the vaccination team will be visiting residents in care homes to administer their spring boosters. Eligible immunosuppressed individuals are being sent letters and leaflets in the post from today, and will be provided with an appointment date and time around 6 months (and not before 3 months) since their last dose of vaccine.
Housebound Islanders who received a home visit for previous COVID-19 vaccinations do not need to book an appointment or call the Coronavirus Helpline. They will be contacted directly by the vaccination team over the coming weeks to arrange a home visit to get their vaccine.
The Vaccination Centre is encouraging other Islanders to book appointments rather than walking in without an appointment, while they prioritise administering spring boosters to vulnerable Islanders.
Spring boosters will be administered providing at least three months have passed since their last vaccination dose. If the last booster was missed, eligible Islanders are urged to receive their spring booster as soon as possible.
Deputy Medical Officer for Health, Dr Ivan Muscat, said: "The latest evidence shows that booster doses provide high levels of protection against severe disease from the Omicron variant.
"Older Islanders and immunosuppressed Islanders are at an increased risk of hospitalisation if they catch COVID-19 without having the protection that vaccination provides.
"Booster doses act as a 'top up' to maintain the highest level of protection, as immunity from previous doses begins to decrease more quickly compared to younger individuals or non-immunosuppressed individuals. It is important that immunity levels are kept as high as possible through booster vaccinations."
Head of the Vaccination Programme, Emma Baker, said: "By getting a spring booster now, eligible Islanders should be ready for their co-vaccination of flu and potential further COVID-19 boosters later in the year.
"The team will be visiting care homes initially and then housebound Islanders over the next few weeks to ensure those vulnerable or older Islanders are able to receive the spring booster more easily.
"I would like to ask families and friends of elderly relatives aged 75 and over to help them book their vaccination appointment at Fort Regent. It is so important that our vulnerable and elderly Islanders continue to be well protected against COVID-19."