BOOSTER Covid jabs for those over 50, in care homes and to frontline health and social care workers will put people at ease when seeing family this Christmas, relieved residents insisted.

Teacher Christine Hindle, 63, was delighted to hear the news announced yesterday in the Government’s booster vaccine plan, after what was her “worst Christmas ever” during the Covid pandemic.

Under the latest plans, people should receive their third booster dose at least six months after they received their second dose of a Covid vaccine.

Experts said the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine should be used as the booster dose for more than 30 million people, and that it was safe to be given alongside the usual winter flu jab.

All those who are clinically extremely vulnerable and anyone aged 16 to 65 in an at-risk group group for Covid will also be eligible for a jab.

Christine, from Shoebury, said: “I have had both my jabs, and I think we are very lucky to live in a country where we have so many vaccinated and have the offer of a booster.

“I can’t see why people wouldn’t take it.

“Doing something like this protects not just yourself, but your loved ones too. That’s obviously really important, but particularly at Christmas time when a lot of us will want to see family.

“For me last year it was the worst I’ve ever had. I was on my own with my husband and I did cook for our older neighbours, but it’s not the same.”

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Three vaccines have been approved as safe and effective as boosters – AstraZeneca, Pfizer and Moderna – but experts have decided to opt for Pfizer as a preference.

The Pfizer jab as a booster can be given to people who had two doses of AstraZeneca previously. While Moderna may be used as an alternative if necessary.

Joanne Copeland, practice manager at Rose Villa Surgery in Pitsea, said: “If we can relieve the stress on the hospitals with these jabs then that’s brilliant.

“A lot of youngsters haven’t had the jab yet, but might be seeing their loved ones especially at Christmas. We want to keep everyone safe.

“We will still do this at the hubs, it’s just a matter of phoning and booking in patients.

“Last time we used George Hurd and this time it will be at The Place.”

However, Laindon resident Pat Rackley has questioned the practicality of rolling out the boosters.

The 71-year-old, said: “Before they had to open up places like the Towngate and George Hurd to make sure everyone could have their injections, but people have just really started going back to these places again.

"We want to have it and obviously you have to be responsible, but we don’t want places to have to close again.”