Page last updated: 13 April, 2022, 3:25pm
Getting your vaccine
Arrange your vaccination
The coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccines are safe and effective. They give you the best protection against COVID-19.
The COVID-19 vaccines currently available are given in two doses. You can follow one of the methods below for both your 1st and 2nd doses. Please bear in mind that you will need to wait some time before getting your second dose:
- Those aged 18 or older can get their 2nd dose 8 weeks after their 1st dose.
- If you are aged 5 to 17, then you need to wait 12 weeks.
You cannot choose which vaccine you have. When you book, you’ll only be offered appointments for vaccines that are suitable for you:
- if you’re pregnant or under 40 you’ll usually be offered appointments for the Pfizer/BioNTech or Moderna vaccines
- if you’re under 18, you’ll only be offered the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine
You should have the same vaccine for both doses, unless you had serious side effects (such as a serious allergic reaction) after your 1st dose.
The COVID-19 vaccines currently approved for use in the UK are:
- Moderna vaccine
- Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine
- Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine
- Janssen vaccine (available later this year)
Arranging your vaccine
- Book your COVID-19 vaccination appointments online for an appointment at a vaccination centre or pharmacy.
- You can find walk-in clinics in mid and south Essex on our walk-in webpage or in other parts of England on the national NHS website.
- Wait to be contacted by your GP surgery and book your appointments with them.
If you cannot book appointments online, you can call 119 free of charge. You can speak to a translator if you need to. If you have difficulties communicating or hearing, or are a British Sign Language (BSL) user, you can use textphone 18001 119 or the NHS 119 BSL interpreter service.
If you live in Essex and need help to book an appointment you can ring 0344 2573 961 (open 10am to 4pm, local rate).
Cancelling booked appointments
If for any reason you are unable to make your appointment, please let us know ASAP by getting in contact with whoever you booked your appointment with (i.e. GP or National Booking Service).
What to expect after your COVID-19 vaccination:
To find out more about what to expect after your vaccination, including common side effects, what you can do after your vaccine, as well as some answers to common questions, please visit the gov.uk website.
The COVID-19 vaccines can cause side effects, but not everyone gets them. Most side effects are mild and should not last longer than a week. The NHS website has further information on the possible side effects.
Pregnancy, breastfeeding and fertility?
Pregnant women should be offered the COVID-19 vaccine. For more information, please see our webpage on the vaccine, pregnancy and fertility.