A poll by MK Council reveals high interest among local over-40s to get their booster shots for covid-19.

More than three quarters of over 40s polled in Milton Keynes said that they’re are intending to get their covid-19 booster vaccination as soon as possible – and almost 90% are committed to getting a booster at some point.

Milton Keynes Council ran a poll among its social media followers to ask how likely local people were to seek a booster. 77% said they intended to have a booster vaccination as soon as they could do so. An additional 11% said they would do it at some point. The remaining 12% weren’t sure of their plans or said they didn’t plan to be boosted.

The poll comes amid a backdrop of high covid rates in the Milton Keynes area, and in the week where over-40s become eligible to receive their booster vaccination shots.

Over 40s become eligible to receive a booster vaccination from Monday 22 November, as long as it’s been six months (182 days) since their second vaccination. This change means around 35,000 additional people in Milton Keynes will become eligible.

Until the recent expansion, over 50s plus adults in particularly vulnerable groups (such as those with underlying health conditions, or frontline health and social care workers) were the only groups eligible for a booster vaccination.

Anyone over 40 who had their second vaccination on or before 24 May can now receive a booster. The NHS plans to contact people in this age group directly to let them know when it is their turn to come forward, and over 40s will also be able to book via the National Booking Service or drop into a walk-in centre where available.

Studies released by the UK Health and Security Agency show that people who have had a booster vaccination are four times less likely to test positive for COVID-19 compared to people who had received two vaccinations more than five months ago.

Deputy Director of Public Health for Milton Keynes, Oliver Mytton said, “I urge people to come forward for their booster, as vaccination remains the single biggest thing you can do to protect yourself and your loved ones from COVID-19. A booster dose isn’t just a nice to have, they are transformative. The protection after a booster dose is better than it ever was after two doses.”

“However, it’s still possible to catch and spread COVID-19 even if you’re fully vaccinated, and the risk is higher in crowded and poorly ventilated places; exactly where people will be spending time as they socialise or run their pre-Christmas errands. It’s really important to keep taking precautions like wearing a face covering, taking regular tests even if you feel well, and making sure you properly ventilate indoor spaces when meeting with others.”