As previously announced, the COVID booster programme for over 50s and health and care staff commences in Gibraltar on Monday 11th October.
The GHA is now able to announce that the annual flu vaccinations will also be offered to these groups at the same time as the covid booster.
Anyone wishing to register for the COVID booster vaccine please register at https://www.gha.gi/pfizerbooster/ . There is no need to register separately for the flu vaccine as this will be offered to everyone who attends.
Minister for Health the Hon Samantha Sacramento MP, said: “The booster vaccination programme commenced in Gibraltar last Monday with residents and staff of ERS being our first priority. Over 750 people will receive their booster doses this week. Plans are now in place for the booster programme to commence for health and care staff and people over 50 from next week. I am delighted to announce that, for these groups, we will be able to offer the annual flu vaccine at the same appointment”.
Dr Helen Carter, Director of Public Health, said: “Gibraltar has done brilliantly in terms of the roll out of the first COVID vaccination program with very high levels of uptake. Now is not the time to become complacent as we move to living with and beyond covid and the easing of some of our restrictions. Research studies are showing us that immunity after vaccination decreases over time. We are currently seeing low levels of covid circulating in Gibraltar but immunity levels will fall. This is especially true for those over 50 years old and people with long term health conditions. I would strongly encourage everyone offered to have a booster covid vaccination. I know that some people are concerned about side effects such as feeling feverish and having body aches. Although unpleasant these are usually mild and short lived. Not everyone will experience these symptoms but if you do it is a sign that your immune system is working and developing a good response to the vaccine. You can take simple over the counter analgesia such as Panadol to help with these side effects.
“This year we are also able to offer people their annual flu vaccination at the same appointment as the COVID booster. These vaccines have been confirmed to be safe to be administered together (15 minutes apart). Last winter there was very little flu that circulated globally but we do not know that this will be the case this year. Let us be prepared and protect ourselves. Again I would encourage everyone who is offered a flu vaccination to take up this offer”