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COVID-19 Vaccine Information

Page reviewed at 09:24 on 30th November 2021

Please continue to follow the national public health guidance to control the virus. COVID-19 is still very prevalent and highly infectious: you could still get COVID-19 and spread it to others even if you have been fully vaccinated.

The NHS regularly updates its web pages with the latest information about COVID-19 vaccinations. We recommend checking these pages for the latest information and guidance on COVID-19 vaccinations.


Latest Guidance

The NHS is working on plans to offer:

  • a booster dose to everyone aged 18 years old and over
  • a booster dose to people aged 16 years old and over with a severely weakened immune system
  • booster doses from 3 months after the previous dose - currently it's from 6 months after the previous dose
  • a 2nd dose to all children aged 12 to 15 years old who are not already eligible

Please note that this is not yet available.

The NHS will update this page when the booking service has been updated. Please wait to be contacted by the NHS and check the service for information when you can book.


1st and 2nd dose appointments

You can get a 1st and 2nd dose of a COVID-19 vaccine if you're aged 16 or over - Book your appointments online if you are registered with a GP surgery in England.
Most children aged 12 to 15 are currently only being offered a 1st dose. Some children in this age group may be offered a 2nd dose if they are at higher risk from COVID-19 - find out more here.
People aged 18 or over should have their 2nd dose from 8 weeks after their 1st dose.

Most people aged 16 or 17 should have their 2nd dose from 12 weeks after their 1st dose.
If you're over 16 or over you can find a COVID-19 walk in vaccination site to get vaccinated without needing an appointment. You do not need to be registered with a GP or bring any ID. Some sites are able to vaccinate children aged 12-15. We expect more sites to become available over time.
If you have any issues booking your COVID-19 vaccination appointment, please call the NHS on 119.


Booster dose appointments

You can book your COVID-19 booster vaccine online if it's been 152 days (5 months) since your 2nd dose and you're in one of these groups:

Although you can book 152 days (5 months) after your 2nd dose, the appointment itself won’t take place until at least 182 days (six months) after your second dose.

Find out more about COVID-19 booster dose appointments from the NHS.

Frequently asked questions

I am unable to have the COVID vaccination for medical reasons – how can I get a medical exemption ?

Thankfully most people are now able to safely receive the COVID vaccination. However, a small number of individuals have a medical reason which means they cannot easily get vaccinated or tested.

Until 24 December 2021, you can self-certify that you’re medically exempt if you work or volunteer in a care home. The yellow lanyard scheme can be used in the interim as a discreet sign that somebody has a hidden disability to support the process.

From 25 December, if you’re unable to get vaccinated, you’ll have to use the NHS COVID Pass in the same way that people who are fully vaccinated use it.

If you're registered with GP at Hand and want to apply for a COVID Pass medication exemption, please follow these steps:

  1. Call 119 and ask for an NHS COVID Pass medical exemptions application form.
  2. You'll be asked some questions and if you're eligible to apply, you'll get an application form by post.
  3. Email your completed application form to us at bhsl.gpah-covid-admin@nhs.net
  4. One of our clinicians will review your application. You’ll automatically get the results of your application by post, usually 2 to 3 weeks after we receive your application form. You do not need to contact us or book an appointment during this time unless we ask you to.
  5. You can access your NHS COVID Pass digitally – on the NHS app or the NHS website. You can also download it as a pdf.
  6. The clinical decision on your medical exemption is final. You can’t appeal the decision.

We are not able to issue application forms, these must be issued by the NHS.

Find more information, see how to apply for and receive your COVID Pass medical exemption on the GOV.UK website.

How can I get a vaccine for my child (aged 12 to 15)?

All children aged 12-15 will be eligible for one dose of the Pfizer vaccine. The vaccine will be arranged and administered in schools. We are unable to arrange vaccinations for children aged 12 to 15 unless they are in a clinically vulnerable risk group.


Can I get my second dose moved earlier?

The guidance on this is very strict at the moment and we are not allowed to book second doses any earlier than 8 weeks. When booking online, you will be offered the first available date after 8 weeks.

More appointments and locations are being added all the time, so it is worth checking back to see if there are any earlier appointments. It is also worth looking out for any local mass vaccination pop-ups in your area, as sometimes these are given permission to give second doses early if they have capacity on the day.


Can you help me get an NHS Covid Pass using my vaccines or test results from abroad?

No. Whilst we can add details of these to your GP record, this will NOT enable the NHS App to create a Covid Pass. The ability to show any “overseas” Vaccination Certificate and request a Vaccination Passport is not currently available from the NHS.

For more information, you can call the NHS on 119 or use the NHS App support service.


I am new to the NHS and have recently registered with GP at Hand, when can I book my vaccine?

Once you have been registered with a GP practice, it usually takes 1-2 weeks for the NHS systems to be updated. Once the NHS systems have been updated you will be able to book your Covid vaccination online.

Please allow at least 2 weeks for the NHS systems to be updated when trying to book your vaccine online.


How do I prove my vaccination status when travelling abroad?

If you’ve had a full course of the vaccine (2 doses) in England through the NHS, you can access your COVID-19 vaccination status through the free NHS App or NHS website. If you do not have access to a smartphone, computer or tablet you can call the NHS helpline on 119 and ask for a letter to be posted to you.

You can access your NHS COVID Pass 2 weeks after having a full course of the vaccine. If you are using the NHS App, you do not need to request access from your registered GP. Your NHS COVID Pass will be shown within the app automatically after you've had 2 doses.

Find the full information on the UK Government website. To learn more about the NHS app, visit the NHS website.


I’ve had my COVID-19 vaccines abroad. How do I get my record updated and see it in the NHS App?

Please email your vaccine proof to bhsl.gpah-covid-admin@nhs.net and your vaccination will be added to your GP record.

However, you should be aware that if you’ve had any of your COVID vaccinations outside of England, it will not show on an NHS COVID Pass (‘vaccine passport’). This is currently only available for vaccinations administered through the NHS in England. NHS Digital are working on the functionality to display non-NHS vaccines within the NHS App and a system to allow this is expected to be launched later in the summer.

We are not able to issue any letters or proof of vaccinations. You should retain physical proof of any vaccinations you have outside of the NHS in case you are asked to show these when travelling.


How can I reschedule or cancel my vaccination appointment?

If you have booked at one of our centres in West London, you should have a confirmation text with the link you will need to cancel or change your appointment.

If you have booked via the National Booking Service, you should have received a confirmation code. You can use this to change your appointment at https://www.nhs.uk/covid-vaccination


I'm aged under 40, which vaccine will I get?

JCVI advises that it is preferable for adults aged under 40 years without underlying health conditions that put them at higher risk of severe COVID-19 disease, to be offered an alternative COVID-19 vaccine to AstraZeneca, if available.

You can book your vaccinations online through the NHS. They’ll provide you with an alternative vaccine which they’ll advise you of when you arrive for your appointment. You can read the full government statement here.

I've had my first vaccine at a walk-in site/ pop-up site, how do I get my second dose?

If it's been over 24 hours since you had your first dose vaccination, you should be able to book your second dose via the national booking service. If it's been less than 24 hours, please wait and try again after 24 hours.

If you have any issues arranging your appointment, you can email us at bhsl.gpah-covid-admin@nhs.net. Please provide the vaccination site details and which vaccine you had. We'll also need your full name, date of birth and postcode to look into this for you.


Can I pay to get the vaccination done privately?

No. COVID-19 vaccines are currently only available via the NHS vaccination programme at this time.


I’ve tried booking online but there is an error.

In the first instance, you can call 119 to check your details are correctly registered. If they are unable to help, please email bhsl.gpah-covid-admin@nhs.net and we will do what we can to assist you.


I've had my vaccine at a walk-in vaccination site but my Covid Pass hasn't updated

You'll usually see the updates on your Covid Pass within 24 hours of having your vaccination – however it can take up to 5 days for your records to be updated.

If your Covid pass has not been updated after 5 days, you should contact the walk-in vaccination site. Unfortunately, GPs are not able to update your Covid Pass with these details at present.