Give yourself a boost to beat the January blues by taking the opportunity to make sure you’re fully vaccinated against Covid-19.
That is the call going out from Manchester’s leading health experts as workers return to the city and children prepare to resume their school term.
In the run up to the festive period there was a huge swell of support from the public who took the right decision to get their booster jab. It is hoped that this enthusiasm will continue in the New Year, adding to the tens of thousands of jabs already given.
David Regan, Manchester’s Director of Public Health said: “Before Christmas it was incredibly reassuring to see the scale of the booster drive. We saw people in their tens of thousands coming out to get protected in light of the Omicron variant and that will certainly have made a positive impact over Christmas and New Year.
“We’ve seen a downturn in the number of people getting their booster in the past few days but we know this will be due to high level of take up, but also because of how many people who caught Covid before Christmas and are still in the mandatory waiting period before getting their booster.
“The next few weeks will be very important for us as we work to restart the momentum seen in in December which is why I’d call for anyone not yet boosted to take advantage of the hundreds of appointments available and make sure their lives aren’t disrupted by Covid in the New Year.”
As well as pushing the vaccination message to people going back to work, efforts are being made to roll out the vaccination to pupils aged 12-15 who will be going back to school this week.
Dr Manisha Kumar, Medical Director of Manchester Health and Care Commissioning said: “As well as ensuring that adults are protected against Covid it’s equally as important that we work to have the new school year as disruption free as possible. I’m a parent and I know the difficulties that younger people have faced since the start of the pandemic which is why we’re doing all we can to reduce absences and keep our children in school.
"The Nation Booking System is a quick and easy way to arrange an appointment for your child and I hope that as many parents take up this option so that their child has the best protection for the year ahead.”
Walk in clinics are not open to 12-15 year olds, so do have to be booked in advance.
It is also important to be aware that there is a 12 week gap between the first and second doses of vaccine for most children aged 12-15.
If a child has tested positive for Covid-19 since their first dose then the second should be delayed until at least 12 weeks from the date of symptoms or if there were no symptoms from the date of the positive PCR test.
The Council would encourage parents to check this time limit has passed before booking any vaccinations to avoid being turned away.
Full detail about who is eligible to get their jab can be found on the NHS website.
People are able to book an appointment to get a vaccination or booster by calling 119 or visiting nhs.uk/coronavirus.
There is also a list of drop-in vaccination sites open in Manchester available at the Council’s website, at www.manchester.gov.uk/getmyjab.