Nicola Sturgeon has confirmed today the government's plans for the booster vaccine scheme over the coming months.

Earlier this year, the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) released initial advice on a third jab programme, recommending governments to provide those who are severely immunosuppressed with a third dose. 

However, advice on a booster scheme has now been extended to include all those over-50. 

Here's what you need to know about who will get a booster jab and when...

Who will get a booster jab against Covid in Scotland?

Only certain groups will get a booster jab against Covid in Scotland, which should ideally be composed of a single dose of the Pfizer vaccine, according to the JCVI. 

The following groups will receive a third Covid vaccine in Scotland:

  • All those over 16 who were initially in one of the nine priority groups, including all individuals aged 16 to 64 with underlying health conditions which put them at higher risk of serious disease and mortality
  • All those over-50
  • Frontline health and care staff

All over-12s who were severely immunosuppressed at the time of their first or second jab, including those with leukeamia, advanced HIV and recent organ transplants, will also receive a third dose of the vaccine, however this is independent from the booster scheme. 

When will you get your booster jab?

The booster jab will be administered six months after people have received their second dose. 

As with the initial vaccine rollout, the booster programme will start with frontline health workers and residents in care homes before working its way down to all those over-50. 

Those first in line will be able to book their appointments will be able to book from Monday September 20.

Adults aged 70 years or over, and everyone aged over 16 on the highest risk list will then be contacted either by letter or by their GP. 

Remaining eligible groups - all adults over 50, all those aged 16 to 49 with underlying health conditions, adult carers, unpaid and young carers, and adult household contacts of people who are immunosuppressed - will be able to book online from October. 

Where possible, it is hoped the booster vaccine will be given at the same time as the flu vaccine. 

Both Pfizer and AstraZeneca have been approved has booster vaccines. 

Why are booster jabs being introduced?

The booster scheme comes as part of the governments plans to manage Covid over the winter months. 

Experts have warned of a "rough winter" ahead for the UK with Covid, flu and other respiratory viruses all in circulation. 

It is hoped providing these groups with a booster vaccine will help to limit both the spread and the severity of the virus, allowing society to live with Covid as it does with other viruses. 

The first minister described the booster scheme as "very welcome".