Keep well this autumn half term

Published: 20 October 2022

These actions will also help prevent the spread of other winter bugs and respiratory infections, such as flu, which can spread easily and may cause serious illness in some people.

Steps we can all take in our daily lives include:

  1. getting vaccinated;
  2. letting fresh air in if meeting others indoors;
  3. practising good hygiene: 
  •  washing your hands
  • covering your coughs and sneezes
  • cleaning your surroundings frequently
4. wearing a face covering or a face mask.

Simon Bryant, the Isle of Wight Council's director of Public Health, said: "With the weather looking mild, half term is a good opportunity to get together outside with family and friends.

"Meeting outside and continuing with the simple hands, face, space and fresh air guidance, will help to protect ourselves, our families and our communities, and reduce the pressure on the NHS.

"People aged 50 and over are now eligible for the autumn COVID-19 booster. You can wait to be contacted by your GP, check with your local pharmacy, or you can book online or attend a walk-in.

"Get your flu jab if you’re invited to have it; this can also be at your local GP surgery or pharmacy. You might be offered both your COVID and flu jab together, that’s fine.

“Making good choices, building up your protection and taking personal responsibility for what you do remains key to preventing the continued spread of the virus in the community."

Councillor Karl Love, Cabinet member for Public Health, said it was clear the pandemic was not over with local NHS and adult social care services dealing with rising rates of COVID-19 among staff and the people they support.

"My message is simple: vaccination saves lives and helps to reduce the pressures on our important hospital, blue light and essential service personnel. It decreases chances of being infected and reduces the risk of severe consequences from COVID-19 and seasonal flu," he said.

"There is no time to lose. I encourage everyone eligible, especially the most vulnerable, to please come forward as soon as possible for both COVID-19 and flu vaccination. You're not only protecting yourselves, but you're also protecting those you love and care for."

You can find out more about what vaccinations you may need, and information about how to book an appointment, by visiting and

For any questions on COVID-19 vaccination, you can contact the Hampshire and Isle of Wight COVID-19 helpline: 0300 561 0081. The line is open 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday and 9am to 1pm at weekends.

A list of upcoming COVID-19 walk-in clinics is available here.

For local information on COVID, visit: