The COVID-19 vaccine is our best defence against the virus used alongside effective social distancing, wearing a mask and washing your hands. Getting vaccinated means protecting yourself and may also help to protect your family, friends and patients from the virus.
The vaccine has been developed and approved following a number of clinical trials involving thousands of people across the world. It has also undergone mandatory safety tests to ensure it is safe for humans.
It is given in two doses by your local NHS service. Appointments will be held up to 12 weeks apart, based on updated guidance from the UK’s Chief Medical Officers.
5-11 year old vaccination information
Parents and carers of all 5- to 11-year-olds will be able to book a COVID-19 vaccination for their child. The national booking service will open for this age group on Saturday 2 April with the first appointments available from Monday 4 April onwards. Please see below Frequently Asked Questions for parents of 5-11 year olds. This section will get updated with new FAQs.
Is COVID-19 disease serious in young children?
My child is healthy. What are the benefits of them having the COVID-19 vaccine?
My child has already had COVID-19 and has built up natural immunity. Why do they still need the vaccine?
What is long-COVID?
Is there more risk to a child having COVID-19 or the vaccine?
Why is the NHS offering vaccinations to 5–11-year-olds when the Government/JCVI has said it is not urgent?
Will the vaccine give my child COVID-19?
How long will the vaccine protect my child from COVID-19?
Which vaccine will my child be given and how many doses will they need?
Why is there a difference in the dose for 5–11-year-olds and those over 12?
Is the paediatric dose as effective as the adult dose?
My child is vulnerable/at risk. When should they have their vaccine?
Where can I get my child the COVID-19 vaccine?
I want to get my child vaccinated – what is the consent process?
My child is scared of injections – is it better to visit a vaccination site or GP/Pharmacy?
Will my child be offered a booster?
Information about the JCVI’s decision to offer 5-11 year olds the vaccination, and the related evidence that was considered, can be found here:
JCVI statement on vaccination of children aged 5 to 11 years old – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
Clinically vulnerable 5-11 year olds
How will I know if my child is eligible?
Where will children get vaccinated?
Testing positive for COVID-19 or PIMS-TS
What is the recommended interval between an individual being identified as Covid-19 positive and receiving the vaccine:
What is the recommended interval between a child or young person who developed Paediatric multisystem inflammatory syndrome and having the vaccination?
What is the COVID-19 booster programme?
Why is the COVID-19 booster programme needed?
Who is eligible for the COVID-19 booster vaccine?
Is there anyone that shouldn’t have the booster vaccine?
If I’m eligible when and where can I get my vaccination?
Why aren’t most younger people being offered a booster?
What type of vaccine will the COVID-19 booster be? What if it’s different to the one I have had?
Will there be any side effects from the booster vaccine?
Can you still catch COVID-19 after having the vaccine?
Can I have the booster if I haven’t had my first and second doses?
Can I get the flu and COVID-19 booster vaccine at the same time?
I haven’t yet had the COVID-19 vaccination, can I still get my first and second jabs?
Can I get the booster if I am pregnant?
What system is in place to give boosters to those who are housebound or a resident in a care home?
PREVIOUSLY PUBLISHED FAQS
Vaccinating young people aged 12 – 15
Who will be responsible for giving the COVID-19 vaccine to healthy 12- to 15-year-olds?
What will be the role of schools?
What happens if a school refuses access to their SAIS provider to deliver the COVID-19 vaccine?
Are at-risk children being vaccinated in schools too?
Will there be national guidance on consent?
Who gives consent for COVID-19 vaccination – and how?
Will school-based vaccination be available for children within a few weeks of their twelfth birthday?
Will school-based vaccination be available for 16-17.75 year olds?
How should local sites deal with intimidating correspondence from Anti-vaxxers?
Will there be an updated pack of resources and guidance issued to regions/systems to support SAIS providers?
When will SAIS contracts be available?
Training and workforce
Will separate workforce competencies be released for 12-15 year olds?
How will SAIS providers access additional staff if required?
Will SAIS providers need additional training and competency assessment to store, reconstitute and handle Pfizer vaccine?
Is there a compliance gap between employment check standards in schools and those in the NHS?
Is any guidance available for supporting children who are needle-phobic?
COVID-19 vaccination for students
What do students do if they are registered with a GP in their hometown, but not where they study, or vice versa?
How can students access their second dose if they are in a different location to where they had their first dose?
Can students due to start a health or social care placement be vaccinated before their placement starts?
What if a student is eligible for their first dose in England, but will be abroad for their second dose (e.g overseas placement)?
How can students obtain a COVID vaccine certificate?
International students FAQs
Are international students eligible for the vaccination?
Do international students need to pay for the vaccine?
Do international students need to be registered with a GP to get a vaccination?
How does an international student get an NHS number?
Are any dependents of international students also eligible for the COVID-19 vaccination?
How does an international student get a vaccine?
If an international student is not registered with a GP, will they still be invited for their vaccination?
What should an international student do if they’ve received their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccination abroad, and it is not a vaccine that is being offered in England?
Where can students find more information?
Vaccinating young people aged 16 and 17
Why is the NHS only vaccinating some children and young people against COVID-19, and not all?
My child is in one of the eligible groups. How do I arrange his/her vaccination?
How do I know the vaccine is safe for my child?
How can I book my appointment?
What if I already have an appointment?
I’ve not had my vaccine yet but have now decided I would like to.
Updated guidance on pregnancy, fertility and breastfeeding and the COVID-19 vaccination
For the latest information, please visit the below link to the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists website
Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine
New guidance has been issued for the use of the Oxford AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine. This follows further reviews by the independent regulator, the MHRA, and the Commission for Human Medicines, of a very small number of people in the UK who have developed a rare blood-clotting condition since having the Oxford AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine.
The MHRA and Joint Committee for Vaccinations and Immunisations have emphasised that the risk of this condition is extremely small and that the benefits of the vaccine outweigh the risks for the vast majority of people. They have published a series of recommendations.
What new guidance has been published about the Oxford AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine?
Which roles are entitled to a vaccination as per national guidance?
Which roles are entitled to a vaccination as per national guidance?
Which roles are not entitled to a vaccination?
Post first dose vaccination
Has there been an improvement in the uptake of the vaccine?
How long with that protection last?
Do I still have to follow national Hands, Face, Space guidelines even though I’ve had my vaccination?
Is the vaccine safe?
Is the vaccine safe?
Has the vaccine been “rushed through”?
How were vaccines developed so quickly?
Was it tested on high risk groups?
Were the trial participants reflective of a multi-ethnic population?
Is the vaccine safe for those who are pregnant or breastfeeding?
What is the evidence to show the vaccination is safe for BAME communities?
Does one vaccine have the potential to be better than another?
Will you use the Oxford vaccine more because it’s cheaper and easier to store?
If two vaccines are proved safe and effective, will the NHS have capacity to deliver both vaccines onwards or will one have to be prioritised?
What about the Moderna vaccine? Why is this available in the USA but not here?
How will you monitor safety?
What are the side effects?
Are there any side effects?
Have there been any adverse reactions to COVID-19 vaccines?
What should I do if I have had a previous serious allergic reaction?
Will my existing medicines clash with the vaccination?
Are there any longer-term side effects?
What is in the vaccine?
Is the vaccine vegan/vegetarian friendly?
What are the vaccine ingredients?
Does the vaccine contain the ‘live’ virus? Can it give me or anyone around me COVID-19?
How does the vaccine work?
How long does it take for immunity to take effect?
When should I have the second dose?
What happens if a person has the first jab but not the second?
I have had my flu vaccine, do I need the COVID-19 vaccine as well?
Will the COVID-19 vaccine protect me from the flu?
Will the vaccine work with the new strains?
Does the vaccine cure COVID-19 if you are positive?
Who can receive the vaccine?
How do GPs know who to vaccinate?
Will key workers, such as teachers and taxi drivers be offered the vaccine?
Should those who are pregnant or breastfeeding have the vaccine?
Why are BAME groups not being prioritised?
Do people who have already had COVID-19 need to get vaccinated?
If I have antibodies do I need a vaccine?
Who gets the vaccine first? For instance, my 80 year old neighbour has received their vaccination before my 90 year old relative. Who decides which patients get their vaccinations?
I am in one of the listed groups above, why do I have to wait?
Where can I get my COVID-19 vaccination?
What if the centre I am offered is not easy to get to?
Can I pay for a COVID-19 vaccine privately or at a pharmacy?
What is the clinical conditions list?
Why have some parts of the system been vaccinating the over 70s before finishing vaccinating the over 80s?
How will staff be offered the COVID-19 vaccine?
Is it mandatory, and what happens if staff don’t want the jab?
How is the vaccine given?
How is the vaccine given?
Can I have the flu vaccine at the same time?
Do you have to have a test for COVID-19 before you have a vaccine?
Are there any non-intramuscular options non-injection options such as a nasal spray or pill?
Might the NHS run out of stocks of the vaccine?
If a person has tested positive do they have to wait for a period of time before being vaccinated and if so for how long?
If you are a close contact and self isolating are you still able to attend for your first vaccine? (It says not if it is for your second vaccine on the website guidance).
If you have had a vaccination and you usually have regular testing in your workplace, do you still need to continue to be tested? In relation to first vaccination, second vaccination and any associated timescales, e.g. at what point after first or second vaccination can you stop being tested?
If you have had a vaccination and after two weeks or over you experience covid symptoms, should you still get a test / self isolate?
Where can I get a vaccine and who will give it?
How are patients invited for a vaccination?
What type of sites will give the vaccine?
Where are the vaccination centres?
I have no transport to get to the hospital vaccination centre, what can I do?
I don’t want to travel to hospital for the vaccine as it’s a COVID risk.
Who gives the vaccination?
Are they qualified? What is the training?
Will you be pulling staff away from other urgent and emergency care?
How are vaccination sites selected?
How effective will the vaccine be?
Once vaccinated can people stop wearing a mask/social distancing?
How long will my vaccine be effective for?
Supplies of vaccination
Why is the allocation of vaccines inadequate?
Who determined the supplies for Suffolk?
Other centres are operating well below capacity?
Does it change your DNA?
There are lots of rumours about it containing human or animal products
I’ve heard you can catch flu from the flu jab – can you get Covid from this vaccination?
Will I be forced to have the vaccination?
I’ve heard that the vaccine trials did not include people from ethnic minority backgrounds – is that true?
Be aware of scams
Common misunderstandings with answers
Fertility and the vaccine
Be aware of scams
The COVID-19 vaccine will always be available free of charge. The NHS will never ask you to share bank details to confirm your identity or pay for a vaccine.
Example of COVID-19 vaccine scam in circulation
Additional sources of information
Prof Jonathan Van-Tam Briefing on COVID-19 Vaccine
Public Health England – Green Book (published 27/11/20)
This chapter includes information on:
- the coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccines.
- the dosage and schedule for the UK.
- recommendations for the use of the vaccine.
Information about the roll out of the COVID-19 vaccination in neighbouring areas:
Norfolk and Waveney CCG – https://www.norfolkandwaveneyccg.nhs.uk/covid-19-vaccination-programme
Essex Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust – https://eput.nhs.uk/news-events/coronavirus
Council for Mosques – Position on COVID-19 vaccines
Click here to download CFM-Position-on-COVID-19-Vaccines PDF
Useful links for Community Transport:
Please click here for more information about community transport
Last Updated on 21 April 2022