People aged 40 to 49 in Scotland will be able to book Covid vaccine booster jab appointments from Saturday.
The vaccination programme will also be extended to 16 and 17-year-olds, who can book slots for second jabs from next Tuesday.
At least 24 weeks must have elapsed between a second and booster jab, or 12 weeks between first and second doses.
Appointments can be made using the NHS Inform portal or by using the national phone helpline.
The latest extension to Scotland’s vaccination programme comes amid concern about a new variant of the virus – called B.1.1.529 – that has been detected in South Africa, Hong Kong, Botswana, Namibia, Israel and Belgium.
Six African countries have been added to the UK’s red travel list, and managed hotel quarantine will be required in Scotland from 04:00 on Saturday for people who have been in any of these countries in the 10 days before their arrival.
Health Secretary Humza Yousaf said the booster vaccinations were just as important as initial jabs, and he urged people to make appointments.
He said: “Six months after the second dose, immunity levels wane with increasing risk of further infection.
“The booster dose improves your level of protection significantly and is the best way to protect your health and those around you.”
While the portal is open for advance booking for boosters for over-40s from Saturday, the first available appointments will be from Tuesday.
Teenagers who were confirmed as having Covid since their first jab, should wait 12 weeks after that before having a second dose.
The national phone helpline for booking vaccinations for those who do not have access to the internet is 0800 030 8013.
NHS Greater Glasgow, meanwhile, is running special vaccination clinics for pregnant women this weekend after an increase number of expectant mothers, most of them unvaccinated, needing treatment in intensive care.
Chief midwife Evelyn Frame said: “The stark reality is being unvaccinated while pregnant puts both you and your baby at increased risk. Some women who have become seriously unwell have had to have their baby delivered early, which is far from ideal.”
An investigation is currently under way into a higher than expected number of deaths of newborn babies across Scotland, with one expert suggesting that an increased number of pre-term births could be one way in which Covid might be a factor.
The drop-in vaccination clinics will be held from 09:00 and 16:00 at the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital maternity unit, the Princess Royal Maternity day care unit and the antenatal clinic at the Royal Alexandra Hospital in Paisley.
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