09 June 2022

A major drive has been launched to ensure people with weakened immune systems get a Spring booster vaccination against COVID-19.

Blood cancer charities joined NHS England in issuing a joint appeal to patients to ensure they get vaccinated.

The booster dose is being offered to all those over the age of 12 who are immunosuppressed. Vaccination should take place as close as possible to six months after the last dose, according to NHS England.

Data analysis by Blood Cancer UK has found that one in 22 COVID-related deaths in the first three months of 2022 was of someone with blood cancer – 404 deaths in total.

The charity’s chief executive Gemma Peters yesterday signed a joint letter with NHS England medical director Professor Stephen Powis and the heads of 15 other cancer charities, including Myeloma UK, Leukaemia UK, Leukaemia Care, and Anthony Nolan.

The letter states: “COVID-19 is still out there and the vaccine offers the best defence against becoming seriously unwell, staying out of hospital and passing on the virus to loved ones and others around you. It is safe, effective and free for everyone, with thousands of convenient appointments every day. You do not even need to be registered with a GP practice to receive your vaccine.

“If you are immunosuppressed, either due to a health condition or medical treatment, you may not yet have the best protection you can possibly get from the vaccine. Additionally, there may be some people who are immunosuppressed who have not been vaccinated at all and we urge them to come forward.”

Source: NHS England

https://www.england.nhs.uk/2022/05/open-letter-from-nhs-charity-and-community-leaders-to-people-with-a-weakened-immune-system/

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