COVID-19 vaccine

What is the COVID-19 vaccine?

The COVID-19 vaccine is a safe and effective vaccine that provides the best protection against COVID-19, a type of coronavirus. Research has shown the vaccine helps:

  • reduce your risk of getting seriously ill or dying from COVID-19
  • reduce your risk of catching or spreading COVID-19 to others more at risk such as vulnerable or elderly family members
  • protect against COVID-19 variants
  • reduce your risk of suffering from lasting health issues such as long COVID
  • enhance your protection if you suffered a previous COVID-19 infection

There are currently 6 COVID-19 vaccines approved in the UK by the UK’s Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA). In Cornwall we mainly use Moderna and Pfizer/BioNTech vaccines, however, all vaccines used have passed vigorous clinical trials and have been approved in the UK. You cannot usually choose which vaccine you have but you will only be offered a vaccine that is suitable for you. Over the last 18 months in the UK and across the world, billions of people have been successfully and safely vaccinated against COVID-19.

Why get vaccinated against COVID-19?

While restrictions have ended COVID-19 has not gone away. We are likely to see regular peaks of COVID-19 cases and new variants emerging for some time to come. The lifesaving COVID-19 vaccine is available free of charge to everyone aged 5 and over. You can book a vaccination appointment near you or just walk in at a time that suits you at a walk-in clinic.

COVID-19 vaccine eligibility

Age 75 and over or you live in a care home for older adults
  • You can get 2 doses at least 8 weeks apart.
  • Booster from 3 months (91 days) after 2nd dose.
  • Spring booster around 182 days (6 months) after previous dose, unless invited earlier.
Aged 18 to 74
  • 2 doses at least 8 weeks apart.
  • Booster from 3 months (91 days) after 2nd dose.
Aged 16 to 17
  • 2 doses at least 12 weeks apart.
  • Booster from 3 months (91 days) after 2nd dose.
Aged 12 or older and you are, or have been, immunosuppressed
  • 2 doses at least 8 weeks apart.
  • If severely immunosuppressed at the time of earlier doses, a 3rd primary dose, typically 8 weeks after 2nd dose (timing may vary and should be discussed with a clinician).
  • Booster doses and spring booster from 3 months (91 days) after previous dose.
Aged 12 to 15

If you have a health condition that puts you at higher risk from COVID-19, or you are a household contact of someone who is immunosuppressed:

  • 2 doses at least 8 weeks apart
  • booster from 3 months (91 days after 2nd dose)

If you are not in the above group:

  • 2 doses at least 12 weeks apart
  • booster dose (under review)
Aged 5 to 11

If you have a health condition that puts you at higher risk from COVID-19, or you are a household contact of someone who is immunosuppressed:

  • 2 doses at least 8 weeks apart.
  • booster dose (under review)

If you are not in the above group:

  • 2 doses at least 12 weeks apart
  • booster dose (under review)

Page last reviewed: 12 July, 2022

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