Around one in five adults in Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole have not taken up the offer of a Covid-19 vaccine, figures suggest.

As the government launches a plan to offer booster shots in the autumn, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has appealed to those who remain unvaccinated to finally get the jab to help the country avoid tougher restrictions in the winter.

NHS England data shows 286,922 people aged 18 and over in Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole had received a first dose of the vaccine by September 13.

However, this means that 70,075 remain unvaccinated – around 19.6 per cent of all adults in the area, based on the number of people on the National Immunisation Management Service.

Those aged 18-29 have the highest refusal rates in the area, with 33.5 per cent yet to get a jab, followed by the 30-39 age bracket (32.6 per cent).

A higher proportion of children aged 16 and 17 are unvaccinated (45.4 per cent), but they were offered the jab much later than others.

At the other end of the scale, just 4.2 per cent of those aged 80-89 have not received their first vaccine.

Around 10.8 per cent of the UK population aged 16 and above have not taken up the offer of a Covid-19 vaccine.

Doctors across Dorset are asking people to come forward to have their vaccine and have reminded the public that there is still time to get jabbed.

Dr Andy Rutland is clinical lead for the Dorset COVID-19 vaccination programme.

He said “The health system is already very busy so in advance of winter we are asking everyone to do what they can to both help themselves and to alleviate the pressure on local services, this includes getting a flu jab when offered, making sure they know where their local services are and getting protected against COVID-19.

“The vaccination programme has been running for nearly a year and thanks to the hard work of everyone involved we have delivered more than 1.2m doses in Dorset, however we are reminding people who may not have had theirs yet or may be hesitant to book in for a jab as soon as they can.

“We will soon be starting the next phase of the programme and delivering booster jabs to people who are most vulnerable – when it is your turn, we will contact you.”

Sam Crowe, Director of Public Health for Dorset and Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole Councils said “By getting a COVID-19 vaccination you are helping yourself and your loved ones stay protected from the virus.

“Regular testing for COVID-19 and getting fully vaccinated are some of the tools we have to getting back to the things we enjoy doing.”