Important information about coronavirus (COVID-19)

The latest information about COVID-19 is available on the NHS website at www.nhs.uk/coronavirus (opens in a new window).

COVID-19 vaccines

The COVID-19 vaccine is safe and effective. It gives you the best protection against COVID-19. Find out more about who can get a COVID-19 vaccine on the nhs.uk website (opens in a new window).

Spring booster vaccinations

People aged 75 and over, care home residents and people aged 12 and over with weakened immune systems are being offered a spring booster of the COVID-19 vaccinations. This follows the recommendation from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) that an extra dose should be offered to these groups to make sure people at greatest risk from the symptoms of COVID-19 continue to have high levels of protection.

Information about boosters in general is available further down this page.

Boosters

The COVID-19 vaccinations cannot protect you from catching the virus. However, having the COVID-19 booster will help to improve and extend the protection against serious illness and hospitalisation provided by your first doses of the vaccine.

  • Most people should have their booster three months after their second vaccination.
  • Immunosuppressed people should have their booster three months after their third vaccination.
  • You will be contacted by the NHS two months after your second vaccination to let you know that you can book your booster on the NHS national booking service in a month’s time.
  • If you prefer to visit a walk-in clinic for your booster, you will be able to do this one month after you hear from the NHS.

It is extremely important that if you are eligible for a booster vaccination you have one, to help you to avoid becoming seriously ill if you catch COVID-19.

Walk-in vaccination clinics

Walk-in vaccination clinics offer first, second and booster doses during the day, evening and at weekends. Details of the dates, addresses, minimum ages for vaccinations and the types of vaccinations offered at walk-in sites are published on the NHS website (opens in new window). These details are updated daily and are published for the week ahead.

You can visit the walk-in centre without having:

  • an appointment
  • an NHS number
  • being registered with a GP.

COVID-19 symptoms and what you should do

Recovery after COVID-19

Most people make a full recovery within 12 weeks of infection, but for some it can take longer and the symptoms may last for weeks or months. This is sometimes called ‘post-COVID-19 syndrome’ or Long-COVID. Recovering from COVID-19 can have a major impact on both your mind and body and it may take some time to come to terms with the after-effects.

There are things you can do to help to understand what has happened and what you might expect as part of your recovery. It is important to know that everybody will experience recovering from COVID-19 differently.

A review by the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) has revealed the following:

  • People who have had one or more doses of a COVID-19 vaccine are less likely to develop Long-COVID than those who remain unvaccinated
  • More people with Long-COVID reported they saw an improvement in their symptoms rather than a worsening after vaccination, either immediately or over several weeks
  • People with COVID-19 who were vaccinated sooner after diagnosis were much less likely to report Long-COVID symptoms than people who were vaccinated later after diagnosis (allowing for the minimum wait after recovering or testing positive before having the vaccination)

The Your COVID Recovery website (opens in a new window) will help you with this and provide information to support and reassure you and your family and friends.

What to do if you need medical help

Use the 111 online coronavirus service (opens in a new window) if:

  • you’re worried about your symptoms
  • you’re not sure what to do

Visit the NHS.UK website if you need information about other services (opens in a  new window)

Coronavirus (COVID-19) information in other languages

Information about coronavirus (COVID-19) is published in other languages by the independent humanitarian movement ‘Doctors of the World‘ (opens in a new window).

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