Find out everything you need to know about the UK Government’s COVID-19 vaccination programme as the NHS begins to rollout booster jabs
COVID-19 booster vaccines are now available to people most at risk of infection, providing they have received their first 2 doses at least 6 months prior.
Those eligible include:
- People aged 50 and over
- People who live and work in care homes
- Frontline health and social care workers
- People aged 16 and over with a health condition that puts them at high risk of getting seriously ill from COVID-19
- People aged 16 and over who are a main carer for someone at high risk from COVID-19
- People aged 16 and over who live with someone who is more likely to get infections (such as someone who has HIV, has had a transplant or is having certain treatments for cancer, lupus or rheumatoid arthritis)
If you fall into either of the above categories you will be invited to book an appointment online. Pregnant people who are also in 1 of the eligible groups can get a booster jab.
Pfizer or Moderna
Either the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine or Moderna vaccine will be offered, regardless of which one you received for your first and second dose. However, those who cannot have the Pfizer/BioNTech or Moderna vaccine will be given the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine.
The booster jab will help extend the protection gained from the first 2 doses. As with the previous vaccines, side effects are possible.
Side effects of the booster jab include:
- A painful, heavy feeling and tenderness in your arm
- Feeling tired
- Headaches and general aches
- Flu-like symptoms
These can be relieved by taking paracetamol and resting. However, if you experience any of the following side effects you should seek medical help immediately.
- Chest pain
- Shortness of breath
- Feelings of having a fast-beating, fluttering, or pounding heart
You can report suspected side effects of the vaccines through the Yellow Card scheme.
It is also safe to receive the flu vaccine at the same time. Check here to see if you qualify for a free flu jab.