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Home World News Washington Post World News UK offers 4th COVID-19 vaccine shot for all over 50s

UK offers 4th COVID-19 vaccine shot for all over 50s

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LONDON – The UK government said on Friday that anyone 50 or older will receive a fourth dose of coronavirus vaccine in the fall, lowering the age limit from the previously announced 65.

The Department of Health said it had accepted the advice of the UK’s independent vaccine adviser on the autumn booster programme.

The fourth dose will also be given to healthcare professionals, nursing home staff and residents, and to anyone 5 years and older with health conditions that make them more vulnerable to serious illness from COVID-19.

Most of the same groups also get a free flu shot.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said the booster campaign would “keep our defenses strong through the autumn and winter”.

“Vaccines were our way out of this pandemic, and now they will ensure that COVID can never haunt us in the same way again,” he said.

Like many European countries, Britain is experiencing an increase in COVID-19 cases, driven by the ultra-infectious BA.4 and BA.5 subvariants of the omicron strain. The Office for National Statistics estimates that 1 in 19 people in England had the virus in the week ending July 6.

The UK has one of Europe’s highest official death tolls during the pandemic, with nearly 178,000 confirmed deaths of people who tested positive.

Follow all AP stories about the pandemic at https://apnews.com/hub/coronavirus-pandemic.



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