Frequently asked questions
Does the vaccine contain the ‘live’ virus? Can it give me or anyone around me COVID-19?
No. The vaccines are designed to produce an immune response to just a small part of the virus, the spike protein. This is the part of the virus that allows it to enter into human cells and cause infection. No whole COVID-19 virus or live virus is used in the vaccines. This means the vaccine cannot give you COVID-19 and does not make you infectious after you have had the vaccine. This means it is also safe for people with a suppressed immune system.
Can I have the flu vaccine at the same time as the Covid-19 vaccine?
It is possible that some people might be able to have their flu and their Covid-19 booster vaccination at the same appointment but this will depend on when their booster vaccination is due.
Does the vaccine cure COVID-19 if you are positive?
You should not have the vaccine if you have had confirmed COVID-19 infection in the previous 28 days unless you are advised by your doctor that it is suitable for you to do so.
Is the vaccine suitable for vegans?
There are no animal products listed in the ingredients.
Will the vaccine affect my fertility?
There is no need to avoid pregnancy after COVID-19 vaccination. There is no evidence that COVID-19 vaccines have any effect on fertility or your chances of becoming pregnant.
Does the vaccine cause blood clots?
The Medicines and Healthcare Regulatory Agency (MHRA) is carrying out a detailed review of reports of an extremely rare blood clotting problem affecting a very small number of people who had the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine. It's not yet clear why it affects some people.
The COVID-19 vaccine can help stop you getting seriously ill or dying from COVID-19. For people aged 40 or over and those with other health conditions, the benefits of being vaccinated with the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine outweigh any risk of clotting problems.
Is there another way to be vaccinated other than having an injection?
Currently the only way you can be vaccinated is by an injection in your arm. If you are worried about having an injection, please let someone know when you arrive at the vaccination centre and we will do our best to make the process as easy as possible for you.
How long does your immunity against Covid-19 last after you’ve been vaccinated?
It may take a few weeks for your body to build up some protection from the vaccine.
Covid-19 remains a new infection and close observation by experts continues. At this stage it is unclear whether the vaccine will need to given yearly, like the flu vaccine, or less frequently.
Trials for length of vaccine protection continue and will also inform how vaccination for Covid-19 is recommended in the future.
What should I do if there’s an error on my vaccination record?
Everyone over 12 who has had a COVID-19 vaccination in England can view their record using the NHS COVID Pass web pages or, for those over 13, through the NHS App.
If you have had your vaccination(s) in England but have an error on your record or a missing or incomplete record, please call 119 and ask to be referred to the Vaccination Data Resolution Service (VDRS). The VDRS will then aim to contact you within 5 working days. Please note that you will need to be registered with a GP practice before the VDRS Team can help you.
If you have had your vaccination(s) outside of England, please use the Overseas Vaccine Validation Record Service (OVVRS) – see below.
If you are intending to use your NHS COVID Pass for travel purposes, please confirm your Covid-19 data is correct and up to date in your Covid Pass prior to booking, and if your record isn’t showing correctly, call 119. For any queries relating to incorrect personal information on your patient record (e.g. name, address), please contact your GP practice.
How can I prove I’ve already had a Covid vaccine abroad?
People over 16 years who have had one or more COVID-19 vaccinations abroad that are approved for use in the UK, can book an appointment at a vaccination site via the NHS website to show evidence of their vaccinations and request an update to their vaccination record. This is called the Overseas Vaccine Validation Record Service (OVVRS). A process for under 16-year-olds will be available from mid-March.