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Bradshaw welcomes clarity on booster vaccine roll-out

Alliance Health spokesperson Paula Bradshaw MLA has said the Health Minister’s clarity on who will be offered booster vaccinations is welcome.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation has advised booster vaccines should be offered to those more at risk from serious disease, and who were vaccinated during phase one of the vaccine programme. The booster should be offered no earlier than six months after completion of the primary vaccine course.

“Alliance welcomes the Health Minister’s statement that those in the most vulnerable categories – including over-50s, those who were shielding and adult carers – will be offered a booster vaccine at least six months after their second dose,” said Ms Bradshaw.

“We recognise this is an extraordinarily difficult decision for the JCVI, given the complexities in establishing exactly who is vulnerable and who must be priority.

“We must also be somewhat wary about the use of supply for booster vaccinations when many parts of the world have not yet managed to roll out even a first dose. It would be an apt time to hear from the UK Government about what role it intends to play in assisting global roll-out, given pandemics are by definition global and can only therefore be ended by global co-operation.

“Nevertheless, the clarity about who will be offered the booster is welcome and will be a key tool in seeing us through the winter with society remaining as open as possible.”