Brits who get booster jabs before December 11 will have ‘very high protection’ against coronavirus by Christmas Day, say experts.

People across the UK are being urged to take the third vaccine as the country seeks to dodge the Covid storm clouds covering Europe.

Those eligible have been told they will be best protected from coming down with a symptomatic case two weeks after the booster vaccine in a new push from the Department of Health.

It comes after Christmas was ‘cancelled’ last year for millions in the south-east who were unable to visit other households, while others also faced last-minute extra restrictions.

Sixteen of the UK’s biggest charities have thrown support behind the campaign to get booster jabs in the arms of the most vulnerable – including The British Heart Foundation, Cancer Research UK and Diabetes UK.

Around 16 million have had the third jab so far, with the over 40s and clinically vulnerable currently invited to get a booster six months after their second jab.

Data has shown falling levels of protection from symptomatic disease and hospital admission six months after people have their second jabs.

Charities are also encouraging people to get flu jabs amid fears the NHS could be overwhelmed this winter.

There are calls for an ‘urgent’ investigation as figures show nearly 10,000 more people than usual have died in the last four months from non-Covid conditions.

It’s feared many people with treatable conditions could be dying as the NHS waiting list hits nearly six million.

Health and Social Care Secretary, Sajid Javid, said: ‘I am hugely grateful to all the charities who are backing our vaccine campaign and supporting some of the most vulnerable in our society.

‘With winter approaching, it’s so important that those who are at risk from the virus are protected in order to keep themselves safe.

‘The vaccines are safe and effective and are helping us build a wall of defence against Covid-19. Please come forward for yours as soon as you can.’

A Department of Health spokesperson said: ‘People who have had their booster vaccine by 11 December will have very high protection against Covid-19 by Christmas Day.

‘Following a rise in cases and a return of lockdown restrictions in Europe, those eligible for a booster have been urged to take up the offer as soon as possible to protect themselves, their families and help to reduce the pressure on the NHS.’

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