Frequently asked questions

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You can also find answers to some of the frequently asked questions by viewing this document or accessing the Gov.uk website

 

FAQs. Updated 23rd February 2021

Priority groups and health condtions FAQs

 

My relative is in a care home, how do they get vaccinated?

23rd February 2021

There is clear evidence that those living in care homes for older adults (nursing and residential) have been disproportionately affected by COVID-19. Evidence strongly indicates that the single greatest risk of mortality from COVID-19 is increasing age and that the risk increases exponentially with age. The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) have advised the first priority group for receipt of COVID vaccination are residents in care homes for older adults and their carers. 

In Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent, our PCNs all care homes have been visited and residents and staff offered the vaccine. For the small number of care homes that have had outbreaks that meant we could not safely offer residents the vaccine, there is a plan in place to revisit these homes as soon as possible.

How will patients be prioritised?

We are following the national guidance to ensure that the vaccine is offered to the most at risk groups. This poster shows who the priority groups are.

The NHS has a vast amount of experience in delivering vaccine programmes for their patients and will identify the best way to invite at risk groups for the vaccine for their area.

03rd February 2021

I am classed as clinically extremely vulnerable and have been asked to shield, will I be offered the vaccine soon?

23rd February 2021

Everyone who has been identified as clinically extremely vulnerable (and has been asked to shield by the NHS) should have been offered a vaccination. If you have not been contacted yet, please contact your GP, phone 119 or use the national booking system to book an appointment.

The vaccine is the best way to reduce the transmission of COVID-19 and it is vital as many at risk groups as possible take up the vaccine.

I have been shielding and am nervous about attending an appointment for my vaccine.

We understand that people may be nervous attending appointments and want to assure you that we are taking extra steps and precautions to ensure that our clinics and vaccination sites are safe.  There are a few things that you can do to protect yourself and ensure you are fully prepared to attend your appointment:

  • Please attend on time, arriving early or late leads to queues

  • Bring a warm coat in case you do have to stand outside

  • Wear a short-sleeved shirt or top that allows quick and easy access to your arm

  • Wear a face covering, unless you cannot wear one for a health or disability reason

  • Bring your booking reference numbers if your appointment is at a vaccination centre

  • Come alone if you can

03rd February 2021

I am over 70 and have not received my appointment yet. Should I be concerned?

23rd February 2021

Everyone over 70 or in a clinically extremely vulnerable group should have been offered a vaccination. If you have not been contacted yet, please contact your GP, phone 119 or use the national booking system to book an appointment.

The vaccine is the best way to reduce the risk of catching this virus.

I work in an education setting; when will I get my vaccination?

Generally, teachers and school/nursery staff are not classed as frontline health and care workers. They are classed as key workers, and remain in priority group ten so will be vaccinated later in the year.

The only education workers who are receiving the vaccine at the moment are those directly supporting/working with clinically extremely vulnerable groups (as determined nationally).

There are a small number of staff in schools that are eligible, including:

  

  • Special Education Needs schools – staff directly in contact with children who meet the vulnerable criteria

  • SEND units in a school – staff directly in contact with children who meet the vulnerable criteria 

  • Staff who work in a young adults residential care setting or learning disabilities care setting.  

 

You can see the full list of eligible workers here. We know every case is different and encourage you to contact us if you think you should be included. Contact information for vaccine queries is below:

 

 

Who is currently being vaccinated?

23rd February 2021

The NHS is currently offering the COVID-19 vaccine to people most at risk from coronavirus.

The NHS is now ready to move to the next priority groups, based on the national guidance from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI). We are now booking appointments for the following priority groups:

  • People aged 64 and over; will be sent a letter asking them to book an appointment at one of the larger vaccination sites or community pharmacies through the National Booking System or phoning 119.

  • People who are in an at risk group (clinically vulnerable), who are aged between 16 and 64, will be contacted by their GP practice and asked to attend one of the local GP-led vaccination sites.

  • Adult carers, with those who are paid being asked to book online or via 119 and unpaid carers will be contacted by their GP over the coming weeks. 

You can find out more about the different sites here. This approach is based on national guidance and is to help us offer the vaccine quickly to as many people as possible. If you have difficulty travelling to the site, please speak to the advisor when booking your appointment.

If you are over 70 or are in a clinically extremely vulnerable group (asked to shield) or a frontline health and care worker then it’s not too late to book your appointment. You can contact your GP or phone 119 or use the National Booking System and get your appointment.

How do I know if I am in priority group six due to my asthma?

23rd February 2021

An individual with a more severe case of asthma may have been included in the Clinically Extremely Vulnerable (CEV) group, in which case they will have been vaccinated in priority group four.

People with asthma which requires continuous or repeated use of steroid tablets or with previous exacerbations requiring hospital admission, will be vaccinated in priority group six. 

This will include:

•Anyone who has ever had an emergency asthma admission or

•Those who have an asthma diagnosis and have had 3 prescriptions for oral steroids over a 3-month period (each prescription must fall within separate individual month windows), as an indication of repeated or continuous oral steroids.

If due to your asthma you are eligible to receive the vaccine within priority group six you will be contacted by your GP over the coming weeks.

Why do I usually receive the annual flu vaccine for asthma but am not a priority for the covid-19 vaccination?

The criteria for the annual flu vaccine (and pneumococcal) is not the same as the Covid19 vaccination and must not be confused as the risk is not equivalent.  For example, asthmatics are eligible for Covid19 vaccination if they require continuous or frequent use of steroid tablets whereas for flu vaccination it is continuous use of inhaled steroids. Another example is that flu vaccination is recommended for those in clinical risk groups from age 6 months whereas Covid19 vaccination is not currently being given to any child younger than 12 years and to a very few 12 --16-year-olds.  All adults will receive the vaccine so if you have mild Asthma you will receive the vaccine within the coming months but do not fall into one of the priority groups identified by the JCVI. 

When will people with learning disabilities be vaccinated?

23rd February 2021

All patients who are on the Learning Disability Register across Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent will be offered the COVID-19 vaccine as part of Group 6. The decision was taken by Staffordshire County Council, Stoke-on-Trent City Council and the NHS as we recognise the difficulty defining different degrees of Learning Disabilities. 

Patients who are on the Learning Disability Register will be contact by their GP over the coming weeks. 

I am housebound, how will I receive my vaccine?

23rd February 2021

We are prioritising vaccinations for the housebound. GPs have a list of their patients who are housebound and are continuing to contact people to offer appointments. 

It is important for people to understand that clinically extremely vulnerable does not necessarily mean housebound. Housebound by definition is those who cannot physically leave the home, if patients usually leave home to attend a medical appointment or to receive their annual flu vaccine they would be expected to travel to their local vaccination site when invited. For anyone who has real concerns about travelling we encourage them to speak to the advisor when booking the appointment.

I’ve got a health condition; is the COVID-19 vaccination safe for me?

23rd February 2021

Coronavirus (Covid-19) can make anyone seriously ill, but for some people the risk is higher. We understand there are some concerns among people who have underlying health conditions, and the NHS has been working with a number of charities to produce advice about coronavirus and certain health conditions. Please the NHS website to read the latest advice about these conditions.

I’ve got diabetes; is the COVID-19 vaccination safe for me to have?

23rd February 2021

All the vaccine trials have included the usual number of participants and no stages of development and testing have been rushed or skipped. The vaccines have been tested in men and women of different ages and ethnicities, with a range of health conditions – including diabetes – and there is no evidence to suggest that the vaccine will work less well in people with diabetes.

Diabetes UK has been working with the NHS to produce advice for anyone diagnosed with diabetes, or for their family or support network.

I’ve got heart disease; is it safe for me to have the COVID-19 vaccination?

23rd February 2021

Yes, the vaccine is safe for people with heart and circulatory conditions. The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation has decided that people who are at risk because of a heart condition should be among those who are prioritised to receive the vaccine. As part of the testing, experts looked at whether there are any differences in how well the vaccines work in people with health conditions, and found that they work just as well. 

 

The British Heart Foundation has been working with the NHS to produce advice for people with heart or circulatory disease .

Has the vaccine been tested for people with health conditions like heart disease or diabetes?

23rd February 2021 

Yes. As part of the testing, experts looked at whether there are any differences in how well the vaccines work in people with health conditions and found that they work just as well.

In the case of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, there were no meaningful differences in how well it works in people with health conditions that put them at risk of severe Covid-19 (including diabetes, high blood pressure, asthma and obesity.)

Testing for the Moderna vaccine included people with diabetes, significant heart or circulatory disease, chronic lung disease, severe obesity and liver disease. The research found that the vaccine worked similarly well in these higher-risk groups to the general population.

Testing for the Oxford vaccine included people with heart and circulatory disease, diabetes, lung disease and obesity, and found it gave similar levels of protection as to those who did not have those conditions.

I am an adult carer – when will I be vaccinated?

Adult carers fall into the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) priority group six. This group is the biggest group to be vaccinated and it will take the NHS several weeks to offer these eligible people the vaccine.

There are three types of carers that fall into group six.

    • If you are a carer who receives a carers allowance, you are now eligible for your COVID-19 vaccine. Please call 119 or book online to book your appointment without delayhttps://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus-vaccination/book-coronavirus-vaccination/.
    • If you are an informal carer who is already on your GP Practice’s ‘Carers Register’, please wait to be contacted over the coming weeks
    • If you are a carer who is not registered with either the Department of Work & Pensions or your GP Practice’s ‘Carers Register’, please wait for further information over the coming weeks. We recognise the vital role carers play in caring for vulnerable individuals and would like to assure all carers that they will be invited for their vaccine over the coming weeks.

 

Coronavirus Vaccine ingredients and safety

 

How does the vaccine work?

The vaccine works by making a protein from the virus that is important for creating protection.  

The protein works in the same way they do for other vaccines by stimulating the immune system to make antibodies and cells to fight the infection.

03rd February 2021

 

How long will my vaccine be effective for?

We expect these vaccines to work for at least a year – if not longer. This will be constantly monitored.

03rd February 2021

 

Will the vaccines work with the new strain?

There is no evidence currently that the new strain will be resistant to the vaccines we have, so we are continuing to vaccinate people as normal. Scientists are looking now in detail at the characteristics of the virus in relation to the vaccines. Viruses, such as the winter flu virus, often branch into different strains but these small variations rarely render vaccines ineffective.

 

03rd February 2021

 

Are there any side effects?

These are important details which the MHRA always consider when assessing candidate vaccines for use.  For these vaccines, like lots of others, they have identified that some people might feel slightly unwell, but they report that no significant side effects have been observed in the tens of thousands of people involved in trials.  

All patients will be provided with information on the vaccine they have received, how to look out for any side effects, and what to do if they do occur, including reporting them to the MHRA.  More information on possible side effects can be found at https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus-vaccination/coronavirus-vaccine/

 

03rd February 2021

 

When will you publish vaccine ingredients?

A detailed review of the vaccines and their ingredients have been provided by the MHRA and can be found at the following links:

For the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine information is available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/regulatory-approval-of-pfizer-biontech-vaccine-for-covid-19

For the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine information is available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/regulatory-approval-of-covid-19-vaccine-astrazeneca

The British Islamic Medical Association have produced a helpful guide for the Muslim community which can be found at https://britishima.org/pfizer-biontech-covid19-vaccine/ 

 

03rd February 2021

 

What about the allergic reactions that have been reported?

These vaccines are safe and effective for the vast majority of people – they have been tested on tens of thousands of people and assessed by experts.  

Any person with a history of immediate-onset anaphylaxis to the ingredients contained in the vaccines should not receive them.  Everybody will also be screened for potential allergic reactions before getting vaccinated. All vaccinators will have the training they need to deal with any rare cases of adverse reactions, and all venues will be equipped to care for people who need it – just like with any other vaccine.  

 

03rd February 2021

 

How will you monitor safety?

23rd February 2021

As with all vaccinations and medicines, patient safety is the NHS number one priority.  Public Health England have robust systems in place to monitor surveillance and will be following incident reporting protocols in the usual way this includes asking patients to log symptoms through the yellow card scheme either online or via the app. 

https://yellowcard.mhra.gov.uk/

Where can I find out more about the vaccination programme?
Further information can be found online by visiting www.nhs.uk/coronavirus

 

I’ve had allergic reactions to vaccines in the past; is the Covid-19 vaccine safe for me?

23rd February 2021

If you’ve had a severe allergic reaction to a vaccine, medicine or food before, it’s safe to have any of the coronavirus vaccines unless you’re allergic to the specific vaccine ingredients. 

Your GP will talk this through with you if you have a history of allergic reactions and monitor you for about 15 minutes after the jab.

A detailed review of the vaccines and their ingredients have been provided by the MHRA and can be found at the following links: 

For the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine information is available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/regulatory-approval-of-pfizer-biontech-vaccine-for-covid-19  

For the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine information is available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/regulatory-approval-of-covid-19-vaccine-astrazeneca 

The British Islamic Medical Association have produced a helpful guide for the Muslim community which can be found at https://britishima.org/pfizer-biontech-covid19-vaccine/

Is the NHS confident the vaccines are safe?

Yes. The NHS will not offer any COVID-19 vaccinations to the public until independent experts have signed off that it is safe to do so.   

The MHRA, the official UK regulator, have said that both of these vaccines have good safety profiles and offer a high level of protection, and we have full confidence in their expert judgement and processes.  As with any medicine, vaccines are highly regulated products.  

There are checks at every stage in the development and manufacturing process, and continued monitoring once it has been authorised and is being used in the wider population.

03rd February 2021

 

General Vaccine FAQs

 

How will GPs be told who to vaccinate?

The JCVI have set criteria for who should get the vaccine in order of priority. GPs, working together with their partners at a local level, will call in or go out to patients based on the prioritisation of the JCVI, using their patient records and those of neighbouring practices. A national invite and recall system, drawn from GP patient records, will also be used.

 

03rd February 2021

Why are healthcare workers amongst the first groups to receive the vaccine?

23rd February 2021

The JCVI have put patient-facing health and social care staff into a priority group because of their heightened risk of exposure to the virus. Further information on from frontline health and social care workers can be found here

What vaccine for COVID-19 is currently available?

Both the Pfizer/BioNTech and Oxford/AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines are now available. Both vaccines have been shown to be safe and offer high levels of protection and have been given regulatory approval by the MHRA.

The Government has in principle secured access to seven different vaccine candidates, across four different vaccine types, totalling over 357 million doses. This includes:  

  • 40 million doses of the BioNTech/Pfizer vaccine 

  • 100m doses of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine

  • 7 million doses of the Moderna vaccine, which is also being assessed by the MHRA.

 

03rd February 2021

Do I need to leave a space between having the flu vaccine and having the COVID vaccine

It is not essential to leave time between the flu and COVID-19 vaccine but it is recommended that there should be a gap of a week.  We would always encourage anyone who is eligible but not yet taken up their flu jab to do so as soon as possible. 

03rd February 2021

Can you catch COVID-19 from the vaccine?

You cannot catch COVID-19 from the vaccine but it is possible to have caught COVID-19 and not realise you have the symptoms until after your vaccination appointment.

The most important symptoms of COVID-19 are recent onset of any of the following:

  • a new continuous cough

  • a high temperature

  • a loss of, or change in, your normal sense of taste or smell (anosmia)

    Although a mild fever can occur within a day or two of vaccination, if you have any other COVID-19 symptoms or your fever lasts longer, stay at home and arrange to have a test.

    Further information on symptoms is available on NHS.UK.

Where can I find out more about the vaccination programme?
Further information can be found online by visiting www.nhs.uk/coronavirus

 

03rd February 2021

Can I go back to normal activities after being vaccinated?

23rd February 2021

Until the Government advises otherwise, everyone should follow the current guidance including social distancing, wearing face coverings, hand washing, and getting tested regularly – regardless of whether they have had their first, or both, doses of the vaccine.

One dose will provide some protection but is not a guarantee of immunity, so it is important that everyone helps by following the guidelines and supporting the NHS as we work to get the virus under control.

Even if you have received the vaccine there is a chance you might still get or spread coronavirus. This means it is important to stick to the Hands. Face. Space guidance - wash your hands regularly, use a face covering when social distancing is not possible and try to keep your distance from those not in your household.

Do I need two doses of the vaccine?

23rd February 2021

Two doses of the vaccine are still needed to get the best protection from the virus, but significant protection is still provided at twenty-two days after the first dose. The new guidance will therefore help ensure that as many people as possible benefit from the first dose of the vaccine as soon as possible.

Should people who have already had COVID-19 get vaccinated?

Yes, if they are in a priority group identified by JCVI. The MHRA have looked at this and decided that getting vaccinated is just as important for those who have already had COVID-19 as it is for those who haven’t. 

 

03rd February 2021

If a household has a priority group member, such as an NHS frontline worker or vulnerable person, will everyone living in that household be vaccinated together?

These decisions are for the JCVI. Their current prioritisation plan does not include household members of NHS staff or clinically vulnerable people automatically – although in some cases family members may be eligible in their own right.  

 

Are there any groups that shouldn’t have the vaccine?

People with history of a severe allergy to the ingredients of the vaccines should not be vaccinated.

Guidance for pregnant women and those who are breastfeeding can be found here

 

Can I book an appointment at my local pharmacy or a larger vaccination site?

Anyone who is over 65 or in the clinically extremely vulnerable group can book an appointment by phoning 119 or using the national booking system and can access the local pharmacy or larger vaccination sites. Alternatively, you can phone your local GP practice to get an appointment at the GP-led local vaccination centres.

If you are over 65 then you can also book an appointment at the local pharmacy or larger vaccination sites.

The pharmacy and larger vaccination sites will also be following the JVCI guidance and vaccinating those who are most at risk first.

 

 

My relative is in a care home, how do they get vaccinated?

There is clear evidence that those living in care homes for older adults (nursing and residential) have been disproportionately affected by COVID-19. Evidence strongly indicates that the single greatest risk of mortality from COVID-19 is increasing age and that the risk increases exponentially with age. The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) have advised the first priority group for receipt of COVID vaccination are residents in care homes for older adults and their carers. 

In Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent, our PCNs are working hard to vaccinate all care home residents and staff as quickly as possible with all immunisation visits subject to guidance, thorough risk assessments, infection and prevention control measures.  The Primary Care Networks (PCNs) (groups of GP practices) will be delivering the vaccine through roving teams.  These GP led teams are experienced in successfully delivering the winter flu vaccine each year. 

Due to the scale of the care home vaccine programme this will be a gradual roll out.  In line with the Government’s national target we are on target to vaccinate all of our care homes and staff by the end of January 2021. 

 

How will patients be invited for a vaccination?

When it is the right time people will be contacted to make their appointments. For most people they will receive a letter or phone call from either from their GP or the national booking system; this will include all the information they need, including their NHS number. Some services are currently also phoning and texting patients to invite them in. 

We know lots of people will be eager to get protected but we would ask people not to contact the NHS to get an appointment until they are contacted. The NHS is working hard to make sure those at greatest risk are offered the vaccine first. 

When you book your first dose you will also be asked to book your second. For most people this will be within three months of your first dose. The UK Chief Medical Officers have agreed this longer timeframe so that more people can get their first dose quickly, and because the evidence shows that one dose offers a high level of protection. Getting both doses remains important so we would urge people to return for it at the right time.

 

Is it safe to attend an appointment for my vaccine?

The NHS is working hard to keep you safe from COVID-19 through a range of measures including cleaning and disinfecting and having social distancing in waiting areas. Please also wear a face covering to your appointment. You should also take the usual steps to minimise your risk as you travel to your appointment.

 

Why am I being asked to attend a different GP surgery or large venue to receive my vaccine?

When contacted for your vaccine, you may be asked to attend an appointment, which may not necessarily be at your local GP surgery. In Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent we are working hard to bring more vaccination sites on-line but, in the meantime, we are encouraging patients to attend the appointment offered and not to delay or decline appointments offered.  It may be that several GPs and PCNs are working together to vaccinate their patients from one site. If you are unable to travel to the site, please speak to your GP practice when booking the appointment.  

If you receive a letter inviting you to book an appointment through the national booking system or by calling 119, you may be offered an appointment at one of the larger vaccination sites.  If you do not wish to travel to a larger vaccination site, you can simply ignore the letter and wait to be contacted by your GP. 

 

Why did vaccinations in my area start later that others?

We were among the first areas to receive the vaccine and have been working hard to offer the vaccine to the most vulnerable people as quickly as possible.

All of our Primary Care Networks (PCNs) (groups of GP practices) are now able to offer the vaccine in Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent, as vaccine supplies become available.

Due to the scale of the vaccine programme and the availability of the vaccine this was always going to be a gradual roll out nationally. Not all areas would be able to go live at the same time.

In the meantime, please do not contact your GP practice as they cannot book you an appointment until they know they have the vaccine.

To find out if your area is offering the vaccine visit our website

 

I missed the call from my GP practice, have I missed my vaccine?

 

 

No, please be assured that we will be contacting people several times to ensure that we get the maximum uptake for the vaccine. The vaccine is the best way to defeat this virus and it is important that as many people as possible take up the vaccine.

 

Due to the requirements of the vaccine, we do have to move quickly and may have to offer an appointment to someone else in the priority groups. However, vaccines are now regularly being delivered and the NHS will be in contact with you to offer another appointment in the coming weeks.

 

 

Women of childbearing age and pregnancy FAQs

 

I’m pregnant, will I be offered the COVID-19 vaccination?

23rd February 2021

Whilst there is no scientific evidence to suggest the vaccine would be harmful to pregnant women and their babies, the vaccines have not yet been tested in pregnancy. For this reason, vaccinations will not be offered to pregnant women routinely. This is case for most new medicines and vaccines and may change when more data about the COVID-19 vaccination in pregnancy becomes available.

However, pregnant women in at risk groups and who are frontline health and care workers may be offered the vaccination, including;

- women with a very high risk of catching the infection; and

- those with a clinical condition putting them at high risk of severe complications

In these cases, women should discuss vaccination with their doctor or midwife to help them make their decision. They may decide that the benefits of vaccination outweigh the risks of catching the virus.

More information on pregnancy can be found here

Is the vaccine safe for pregnant women?

23rd February 2021

The COVID-19 vaccines available in the UK have been shown to be effective and to have a good safety profile. The early COVID-19 vaccines do not contain organisms that can multiply in the body, so they cannot infect an unborn baby in the womb. Pregnant women were not included in the COVID-19 vaccine trials but that does not mean they are unsafe. 

While there are myths on social media that the vaccine can affect fertility, there is no scientific evidence to suggest that the vaccine affects fertility or the ability to carry a child to full term.

During the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine study, there were 23 study participants who became pregnant during their vaccine trial. There was one pregnancy loss, but this was in a participant who received the placebo, not the vaccine.

The antibodies produced against the Covid-19 spike protein following immunisation will not block syncitin-1 – the protein critical for the placenta to remain attached to the uterus. While the Covid-19 spike protein shares several amino acids in common with syncitin-1, it is significantly different enough for the antibodies to recognise and block this critical placental binding protein. It should be also acknowledged that this vaccine is not a ‘live’ vaccine and there is no known risk associated with giving other non-live vaccines.

While there is no evidence that acute Covid-19 infections themselves cause infertility in the short- or long-term, there has been evidence that the acute viral infection can lead to orchitis, or inflammation of the testicles. This would not be unique to SARS-CoV-2, as other viruses such as mumps, hepatitis, and Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV) can cause acute inflammation, and later scarring, of the testicles.

Some pregnant women who have contracted Covid-19 have died and/or suffered fetal loss as a result of acute Covid-19 infections therefore pregnant women who are frontline health or social care workers, including carers in a residential home, can also discuss the option of vaccination. This is because the risk of exposure to COVID-19 may be higher, even if they have a lower risk of experiencing complications if they are otherwise well. The JCVI also now advises that there is no known risk in giving these vaccines to breastfeeding women.

I am trying to get pregnant, can I get the COVID-19 vaccination?

23rd February 2021

Women who are trying to get pregnant can have the COVID-19 vaccination. There is no evidence that the vaccine affects fertility and those who are trying to become pregnant do not need to avoid pregnancy after vaccination.

More information on fertility can be found here

What happens if I become pregnant after my first dose of the vaccination?

23rd February 2021

If you do become pregnant after your first dose of the vaccination you may want to delay getting the second dose until after your pregnancy unless you are high risk i.e.  you have a very high risk of catching the infection or have a clinical condition putting you at high risk of severe complications.

More information on pregnancy and fertility can be found here

I’m breastfeeding, can I get the COVID-19 vaccination?

23rd February 2021

Women who are breastfeeding can receive the vaccine.  Whilst there is no data on the safety of COVID-19 vaccines, in breastfeeding women and their babies, they are not thought to be a risk and the benefits of breast-feeding are well known.

More information for nursing mothers can be found here

 

Attending and travelling to your Coronavirus vaccine appointment

 

Do vulnerable people travel to get the vaccine or does it come to them?

We are planning a mixed approach to ensure that people who are eligible can get the vaccine safely. For care home residents and those who can’t leave home, this will involve roving community teams coming to them.

03rd February 2021

I had to queue outside in the cold for my vaccine.

We are sorry if you have had delays or had to wait outside. Our sites have been working hard to minimise any waiting times for patients. Due to social distancing in the buildings, we cannot ask people to wait inside.

It is important that people follow the instructions they are given when booking the appointment and arrive at the right time. Please do not arrive early for your appointment.  We are vaccinating large numbers of people at every session to help distribute the vaccine to as many people as possible.

Thanks to our local authority partners and the independent building owners, our sites are being gritted during the winter season.

03rd February 2021

Will I still need to follow the social distancing guidance and wear face coverings?

Yes. The vaccine cannot give you COVID-19 infection, and a full course will reduce your chance of becoming seriously ill. We do not yet know whether it will stop you from catching and passing on the virus, but we do expect it to reduce this risk. So, it is still important to follow the guidance in your local area to protect those around you.

To protect yourself and your family, friends and colleagues you still need to:

  • practice social distancing

  • wear a face mask

  • wash your hands carefully and frequently

  • follow the current guidance.

    It may take a week or two for your body to build up some protection from the first dose of vaccine. Like all medicines, no vaccine is completely effective, so you should continue to take recommended precautions to avoid infection. Some people may still get COVID-19 despite having a vaccination, but this should be less severe.

 

03rd February 2021

I don’t have access to transport to get to my vaccination appointment, how can I get there?

23rd February 2021

All of the vaccination sites have car parking provision and are easily accessible via public transport. A full list of the vaccination sites can be found here

Public transport information for Staffordshire & Stoke-on-Trent can be accessed here:

Staffordshire – Plan your journey

Stoke-on-Trent – Plan your journey

If you do not have your own means of transport and cannot access public transport, please make the adviser aware when booking your vaccination appointment and they will be able to help you.