FAQ’s

On this page you’ll find the answers to frequently asked questions around the COVID-19 vaccine and our vaccination centre.

Covid-19 Vaccination Programme

The NHS is continuing the delivery of a safe and effective COVID-19 vaccination programme. Pharmaxo is supporting this by delivering a pharmacy led service for administering the vaccine to the public.

How to get the COVID-19 vaccine

Groups eligible for the vaccine are being updated regularly, priority is being given to people most at risk. Information on who is eligible can be found here.

If you are not eligible yet

Wait to be contacted. The NHS will let you know when it’s your turn to have the COVID-19 vaccine. It’s important not to contact the NHS for a vaccination before then. Appointments can be booked online by clicking here.

The vaccine is given as an injection into your upper arm.

While the injection can be given very quickly, patients receiving the Pfizer vaccine should wait on site for 15 minutes afterwards to check they do not experience a severe reaction.

Patients are also urged not to arrive too early, to avoid queuing outside for too long.

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

Any COVID-19 vaccine that is approved must go through all the clinical trials and safety checks all other licensed medicines go through. The MHRA follows international standards of safety.

Other vaccines are being developed. They will only be available on the NHS once they have been thoroughly tested to make sure they are safe and effective

So far, millions of people have been given a COVID-19 vaccine and reports of serious side effects, such as allergic reactions or clotting problems, have been very rare.

The approved vaccines do not contain any animal or egg products. We have included links to the most relevant information on this subject.

 

We understand women may be concerned about the effect on their fertility or having the vaccine while pregnant or breastfeeding. Pregnant women can now book on the National Booking Service – when you book you will be directed to a centre(s) which hold the type of vaccine you require.

The JCVI updated their advice on 16 April 2021 and are now advising that all pregnant women should be offered the COVID-19 vaccine at the same time as the rest of the population, based on their age and clinical risk group. Previously their advice was that pregnant women at high risk of exposure to the virus or with high risk medical conditions should consider having a COVID-19 vaccine in pregnancy (priority groups 1, 2, 4 and 6).

This latest advice means that COVID-19 vaccines should be offered to pregnant women at the same time as the rest of the population, based on their age and clinical risk group. Women can discuss the benefits and risks of having the vaccine with their healthcare professional and reach a joint decision based on individual circumstances.

We have included a few useful links to the Royal College of Obstetricians & Gynaecologists which provides more FAQs (updated on Friday 7 May) around the vaccine and vaccine safety for those who are pregnant or breastfeeding as well as information on COVID, pregnancy and Women’s health. You can also find Public Health England advice and guidance here.

Your appointment should last for around 30 to 45 minutes.

You'll be asked some questions about your medical history.

It's important to tell the staff giving you the vaccination if you have ever had a severe allergic reaction or you are pregnant.

If your appointment is at a vaccination centre, you'll be asked for your booking reference numbers.

You will then be given an injection of the vaccine into your upper arm.

All places that offer COVID-19 vaccinations will help keep you safe from COVID-19. There will be regular cleaning and social distancing in waiting areas.

You may be asked to wait for 15 minutes after having the vaccination. This is in the unlikely event you have a serious reaction to the vaccine.

Research has found it's very rare to have a serious allergic reaction to the vaccine. If this does happen, it usually happens within minutes.

The team are trained to deal with reactions and treat them immediately.

You will also be given a leaflet about what to expect after your vaccination to take home with you.

Find out more about what to expect after the COVID-19 vaccination on GOV.UK

Once you’ve had your vaccine:

Please remember that you must still stick to the social distancing and hands, face space rules as this will go a long way to preventing the spread of the virus.

Most side effects of the COVID-19 vaccine are mild and should not last longer than a week, such as:

  • a sore arm where the needle went in
  • feeling tired
  • a headache
  • feeling achy
  • feeling or being sick

You can take painkillers, such as paracetamol, if you need to.

You may get a high temperature or feel hot or shivery 1 or 2 days after having your vaccination.

But if you have a high temperature that lasts longer than 2 days, a new, continuous cough or a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste you may have COVID-19. Stay at home and get a test.

If your symptoms get worse or you are worried, call 111.

Allergic Reactions

Tell healthcare staff before you are vaccinated if you've ever had a serious allergic reaction.

You should not have the COVID-19 vaccine if you have ever had a serious allergic reaction (including anaphylaxis) to:

  • a previous dose of the same vaccine
  • any of the ingredients in the vaccine

Serious allergic reactions are rare. If you do have a reaction to the vaccine, it usually happens in minutes. Staff giving the vaccine are trained to deal with allergic reactions and treat them immediately.

Report a Side Effect

You can report any suspected side effect using the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Yellow Card safety scheme.

Report a vaccine side effect on the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Yellow Card website.

More information

For further information on the COVID-19 vaccine from the UK government please click here for a COVID-19 vaccination easy read guide. For the UK government guide “What to expect after your vaccination leaflet” please click here.