Thursday 25 July 2024
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NHS delivers ‘super Saturday’ as COVID booster jabs soar

The NHS delivered another record-breaking day for booster jabs with more than 830,000 reported on ‘super Saturday’ as the NHS booster programme continues at pace.

A total of 830,403 boosters were delivered and 906,656 vaccinations altogether, including more first and second vaccinations – both records for the programme.

The biggest and most successful vaccination programme in health history chalked up a string of records this week, as the programme goes from strength to strength, in a bid to get the nation protected against the new Omicron variant.

In the last week, more than 4.2 million boosters were reported (Sun 12 to Sat 18 Dec) – up on 2.4 million boosters the week before – and a 77 per cent increase.

Since Monday, more than 3 million people were also quick to book in for their boost in protection.

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More than 23.6 million boosters have been delivered so far and more than seven in 10 of all over 40s have received their booster – since the programme rolled out within 48 hours of approval.

As part of the national mission to get people vaccinated as quickly as possible following the emergence of the new variant, the NHS booster programme opened up to millions more people so that every eligible adult can book their vital jab.

The NHS is urging everyone who is eligible – 3 months on from their second jab – to get their booster as soon as possible

Every eligible adult can now book in for their lifesaving jab online and given some sites remain busy, the NHS is encouraging people to book in to guarantee their slot.

Appointments continue to be available over the festive period.

Dr Emily Lawson, Head of the NHS Vaccination programme, said: With the highest ever number of boosters and vaccines recorded on Super Saturday, and the NHS COVID vaccination programme delivering a string of records already this week, millions more people are getting their protection from the virus.

“I want to say a huge thank you to NHS staff and volunteers who are working flat out to vaccinate people in the run up to Christmas and it’s great to see that their efforts have been matched by the public’s willingness to get protected. From large centres to small community pharmacies, the whole country is pulling together to get everyone jabbed.

“And with Omicron spreading quickly it’s vital we keep that enthusiasm going – and as long as people continue to come forward the NHS will be there to get them vaccinated – so the NHS message is clear, book your booster today to guarantee your vital and lifesaving jab”.

Vaccination sites have been asked to operate 12 hours a day, seven days a week wherever possible and in every community there should be slots available at least 16 hours a day – with some sites extending to a 24- hour operation to make it easier for people who work shift patterns.

There are now around 3,000 sites across the country, with 99% of the country living within 10 miles of a site including around double the number of hospitals offering jabs to the public.

In just over a year since Maggie Keenan received the first approved COVID-19 vaccine in the world, the NHS has administered over 106 million jabs.

People can have a booster three months after their second jab, following updated guidance from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation.

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