Coronavirus (Covid-19): service updates, support and health advice.

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The NHS has information about the coronavirus (Covid-19) vaccine.

Beware of vaccine scams. You will never be asked personal information or for payment as part of the NHS free Covid-19 vaccination programme. 

Easy-read and other languages

NHS and Public Health England have a range of easy-read leaflets about vaccination, including:

Visit GOV.UK for the webpage (HTML) version of the Covid-19 vaccination: easy-read leaflets.

GOV.UK also has an easy-read consent form for adults to download.

Vaccination information in other languages:

We also have vaccination resources in other languages (including posters) on our Covid-19 resources page.

The vaccine

The Covid-19 vaccine is safe and effective. It gives you the best protection against coronavirus.

You cannot catch Covid-19 from the vaccine.

The vaccines approved for use in the UK meet strict standards of safety, quality and effectiveness set out by the independent Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).

Millions of people have been given a Covid-19 vaccine and serious side effects, such as allergic reactions, have been very rare.

There is no evidence that the vaccine affects fertility.

The Covid-19 vaccine does not contain any animal products or egg.

Vaccine for people under 30

The Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) have announced changes to the guidance around the AstraZeneca (AZ) vaccine.

This is in relation to the extremely rare (around 4 people for every million doses of AZ vaccine doses given) blood clots and low platelet count in a small number of people following vaccination with the first dose of AstraZeneca.

As this is seen slightly more often in younger people, the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) advises that it is preferable for adults aged under 30 with no additional risk factors to receive an alternative first vaccine.

If you have already had a first dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine without serious side-effects you should complete the course.

Public Health England has further information on the AstraZeneca vaccine.

The vaccination programme

What doses to expect

People aged 18 and over (or turning 18 within 3 months) can get a first and second dose of a Covid-19 vaccine. People aged 16 or 17 will be able to book a second dose soon.

Most children and young people aged 12 to 15 are currently being offered a first dose. Some may be offered a second dose if they have a higher risk of getting seriously ill from Covid-19, or they live with someone at high risk of catching it.

People with a weakened immune system are being offered a third dose. If you are eligible the NHS will contact you. GOV.UK has a guide for people with a weakened immune system.

The third vaccine dose for people with a weakened immune system is not a booster dose.

You should not attend a vaccine appointment if you are self-isolating or waiting for a Covid-19 test.

Children and young people aged 12 to 17 should wait to have the vaccine for 12 weeks after testing positive or at least 4 weeks if you are at higher risk.

Adults should wait to have the vaccine 4 weeks after a positive test result.

Booster vaccine

A booster vaccine dose helps improve the protection you have from your first 2 doses of the vaccine.

The NHS website has more information on the booster vaccine including who is eligible and how to book. Some walk in clinics also offer the vaccine booster, you can check individual clinics on the BNSSG Healthier Together website.

GOV.UK has a further guide to booster vaccination.

Questions and answers about the Covid-19 booster vaccination.

People aged 16 and over

Anyone over 16 can have their vaccination without waiting to hear from their GP.

The Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning website has more information on booking your Covid-19 vaccination or going to a walk-in clinic.

Children and young people aged 12 to 15

Children aged 12 to 15 are being offered a first dose of the Covid-19 vaccination, following advice from the UK’s Chief Medical Officers.

All secondary school aged children are also being offered a flu vaccine this winter.

For those eligible for both vaccines, they will be given together. The Covid vaccine is an injection in the upper arm and the flu vaccine is a nasal spray.

Vaccinations will be given at school, or Covid-19 vaccination can be booked using the National Booking System (or by calling 119).

Parents and carers will be asked to give consent before their child receives any vaccine.

In South Gloucestershire, Sirona Care & Health delivers the school immunisation service and they will be in touch about how the process will work and consent forms.

Questions and answers about the Covid-19 and flu vaccination for 12 to 15 year olds.

GOV.UK has Covid-19 vaccination guidance for children and young people.

Further information

The NHS website has more information on who can get a coronavirus (Covid-19) vaccine.

Care home workers

People working or volunteering in care homes will need to be fully vaccinated against Covid-19 by 11 November 2021.

This will help to protect those most at risk from the virus.

GOV.UK has the full guidance: Vaccination of people working or deployed in care homes.

Other things that can help

The government has provided British Sign Language (BSL) resources about the Covid-19 vaccine:

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