Adults in their forties are expected to be invited for their Covid-19 vaccination this week, as the UK approaches its deadline for vaccinating the highest priority groups.
The government is aiming to have offered a vaccine to everyone in the nine most at-risk groups, including the over 50s and anyone aged 16 and over with an underlying health condition, by 15 April.
Once everyone in these priority groups have been offered a jab, the NHS is expected to begin phase two of its vaccination programme, which starts with adults over the age of 40.
When will over 40s get the vaccine?
Reports suggest that some healthy adults in their 30s could be invited for their first dose of a Covid-19 vaccine as soon as Tuesday (13 April).
More than 32 million people have now received a first dose, while almost 7.5 million are fully vaccinated.
The government set a target of mid-April to offer a first dose of vaccine to everyone in the top nine priority groups, also known as phase one of the vaccination programme, while phase two will see the jab offered to younger healthy adults, starting with those aged 40 to 49.
A Department of Health and Social Care spokesperson said: “Our vaccination programme continues at pace with over 32 million people having now received a first dose.
“Our target is to offer a jab to over 50s by April 15 and all adults by the end of July, and we are on course to meet that.
“We will be setting out more details later this week.”
However, supply constraint could mean that many people may have to wait a little longer to be invited for their jab.
In March, the NHS in England warned of a “significant reduction in weekly supply” throughout April, meaning volumes for first doses will be “significantly constrained”.
Throughout April, the health service has prioritised second doses of the Pfizer and AstraZeneca vaccines, with a record 475,230 people receiving their second jab on Saturday (10 April).
The availability of the Moderna jab, which is the third coronavirus vaccine to be approved in the UK, means the UK can now step up the number of first doses offered to the public, while stocks of the Pfizer and AstraZeneca vaccines can mostly be used for second doses.
UK medicines regulators have recently recommended that adults aged 18 to 29 should now be offered alternatives to the AstraZeneca vaccine, following concerns of a possible link between the jab and “extremely rare” blood clots.
As such, people under the age of 30 could receive the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines instead.
Both Wales and Scotland have already started administering the Moderna vaccine, alongside Pfizer and AstraZeneca, while England is due to follow from mid-April.
How do I book an appointment?
When it is your turn to book your Covid-19 vaccination, visit nhs.uk.
When you book, you will be asked for information including:
- your name and date of birth
- your NHS number – this is a 10 digit number you can find on any letter the NHS has sent you, for example, 485 777 3546
If you do not know your NHS number you can still book your appointment.
You should only book an appointment once you have been contacted by the NHS. You should not contact the NHS for a vaccination before then.
You need two doses of a Covid-19 vaccine to get the best protection from the virus.
Your second dose will be given around 11 to 12 weeks after your first. When you book your first appointment, you will also need to book your second appointment at the same time.