The Government has revealed preliminary plans for a Covid-19 revaccination campaign, which it says ‘is likely to run later this year in autumn or winter’.
Details of the plan were published in the Government’s four-step roadmap yesterday (22 February) which explains how lockdown restrictions will be eased in England over the next five months.
‘It is not currently known for how long people who receive a Covid-19 vaccine will be protected. This is because, as is the case with many vaccines, the protection they confer may weaken over time,’ the document explained.
‘To ensure the country is prepared for these scenarios and while further evidence is gathered, the Government is planning for a revaccination campaign,’ it said.
Although the plan did not detail who would be eligible for the annual vaccine, it did say the vaccine would ‘likely to consist of a single ‘booster’ dose’.
‘The ideal booster may be a new vaccine specifically designed against a variant form of the virus. Over the longer term, revaccination is likely to become a regular part of managing Covid-19.’
It also said that ‘continuing to administer these vaccines at scale remains key to bringing the virus under control and enabling restrictions to be lifted safely’.
This comes after Nadhim Zahawi, the vaccines minister, said on the Andrew Marr show (7 February) that an annual vaccine against variants of the virus could be necessary. New research suggested that community pharmacies could be key players in an annual rollout of the vaccine.
New research — which has not yet been peer-reviewed — suggested that community pharmacies could be key players in an annual rollout of the vaccine.