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Evidence shows that COVID-19 vaccine protection fades and the flu virus changes over time. A winter dose of the vaccines can top up your protection and help reduce your risk of severe illness from COVID-19 and flu.

More than two million people in Scotland are being offered vaccines for COVID-19 and flu this winter – with those most at risk the first to be vaccinated to protect themselves and help relieve pressure on the NHS. Nearly half a million flu vaccinations and over 400,000 COVID-19 vaccinations have been given to adults to date.1

Frontline health and social care workers, residents and staff in care homes for older adults, and everyone who is aged 65 or over have already been invited forward for vaccination. Appointment letters are now landing for those aged 5 and over who are at higher risk of COVID-19 or flu. Those who are pregnant can speak with their midwife about arranging their appointment.

Later this month the online booking portal will open for other eligible groups including those aged 50 -64 with no underlying health condition. Carers, and those who live with a person with a weakened immune system, can also book their appointment online or by phone.

Health Secretary Humza Yousaf said:

“Viruses like flu and COVID-19 can spread quickly in winter and can be serious. Vaccines are our best protection against these viruses, but research shows this protection can fade over time. With an uncertain winter ahead, it’s important to get the vaccines when they are offered to you, so that we can top up your protection and boost your immunity.”

Where possible, the COVID-19 and flu vaccines will be given at the same time to those who are eligible. Evidence shows that administration of both vaccines together is a safe and efficient way to deliver maximum protection over the winter months.

If you have missed your appointment you can book at nhsinform.scot/wintervaccines or call 0800 030 8013.