Nearly 90% of people across the UK are “likely or very likely” to accept a third Covid-19 jab if offered, a new survey released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) has revealed.
On Friday, the ONS released the latest data from its ongoing Opinions and Lifestyle Survey project, which found that a whopping 87% of respondents would be in favour of receiving a Covid booster shot.
Older members of the population expressed more enthusiasm at the prospect of a third jab, with almost 96% of those aged 70 or over saying they would be “likely or very likely” to do so. The survey figure was lower for younger Britons in the 16 to 29 age-bracket, standing at 78%.
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Speaking to reporters on Thursday, Britain’s Health Secretary Sajid Javid said that the proposed booster scheme will likely start in September. Javid, however, did not pinpoint an exact date, citing that the government first needs final advice on the matter from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Inoculation (JCVI).
A handful of countries have already introduced a booster dose as part of their vaccination regimens. Serbia and Hungary began offering its citizens a third Covid shot earlier this month, while Israel continues to lower the eligible age for its booster jabs after rolling out the scheme at the end of July.
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The head of the World Health Organization (WHO) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus urged nations to pause or delay issuing third shots in a bid to alleviate vaccine inequity between high and low income states. “WHO is calling for a moratorium on boosters until at least the end of September, to enable at least 10% of the population of every country to be vaccinated,” he implored the governments of richer nations.
The JCVI last month recommended that all adults in the UK aged 50 and over, pensioners living in care homes, frontline workers, and anyone aged 16 and higher who is clinically vulnerable or immunocompromised should be offered a vaccine top-up this autumn.
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