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Two million more to be invited for Covid jabs

Joe Gammie
·3 min read

Nearly two million people aged 60 to 63 in England are being invited to book a coronavirus jab as part of the continued expansion of the vaccine programme.

NHS England said that the letters will start landing on doormats from Monday, explaining how people can make an appointment to get jabbed through the national booking service.

They have been sent out after more than three in four people aged 65 to 70 took up the offer of a vaccination, it added.

It comes as leaders from 60 of the UK’s black majority churches joined forces on Sunday to show their support for the Covid-19 vaccine to their congregations.

They will say they support the rollout of the Covid-19 vaccine programme, and urge their congregations to seek out the facts about the vaccine from trusted sources.

They will also say that they have either already been vaccinated or that they will get the vaccine when it is their turn.

Watch: Prince William urges vaccine uptake and warns of social media 'awash with misinformation'

The alliance of Christian leaders, which includes Bishop of Dover the Rt Rev Rose Hudson-Wilkin, said they felt compelled to act after data suggested black people are among those most likely to be hesitant about receiving the Covid-19 vaccine.

HEALTH Coronavirus
(PA Graphics)

Bishop Hudson-Wilkin said: “When you are offered the Covid vaccine, please take it.

“This is our chance to show we care for ourselves and our neighbours.

“Don’t let misinformation rob you of your opportunity to protect yourself and others.”

This initiative has been organised by Christian umbrella organisations Churches Together in England, Evangelical Alliance and YourNeighbour.

A total of 17,254,844 Covid-19 vaccinations took place in England between December 8 and February 26, according to provisional NHS England data, including 16,679,881 first doses.

NHS England said the latest batch of invites arriving this week will mean everyone in the first seven priority groups will have been offered a jab, with people aged between 50 and 60 set to be invited shortly.

HEALTH Coronavirus
(PA Graphics)

Sir Simon Stevens, chief executive of NHS England, said: “Since around four fifths of 65-69 year olds have now been vaccinated, we’re rapidly working our way down the generations, with people ages 60 plus now able to come forward.

“As expected vaccine supply increases in March, we’re planning for further acceleration as we head towards Easter.”

The push to get as many of the most at-risk people protected means nine in 10 people in the top four priority groups have received a jab, NHS England said.

People can use the national booking service to reserve a slot at one of more than NHS Vaccination Centres or almost 200 pharmacy-led services across the country, it added.

The booking service can be accessed at www.nhs.uk/covid-vaccination.

Those who cannot go online can call 119 free of charge and NHS teams are visiting people who are housebound and cannot travel to a vaccination service.