Flu covid cloud.pngCOVID-19 Autumn boosters and Winter Flu jabs are available. Vaccines will be available by appointment only and you will need your NHS number to book an appointment. Please use Microsoft Edge to open the link.

Please do not share this link outside the Trust. 

Appointments will be released two weeks in advance. Clinic opening times will vary depending on location. All available appointments will be visible in the SimplyBook system.

If you have already had COVID/flu vaccination outside the organisation, please let us know by completing this form.

If your team is having difficulties attending the sites please contact the below to arrange specific dates/time/site: Emma.furlong2@merseycare.nhs.uk.

The Vaccination Centre in Maghull will be open as usual from Tuesday to Thursday and the team will be out and about more on wards and sites. Please make them welcome. 

Flu and COVID-19 Calendar week starting 5 December 2022

Monday 5 December

Clock View, 2a Oakhouse Park, Liverpool L9 1EP

Goodlass Road, Speke, Liverpool, L24 9HJ

Old Swan Walk In Centre, Crystal Close, Liverpool, L13 2GA (out of hours)

Tuesday 6 December

Lifehouse, Summers Rd, Liverpool L3 4BL

Broadoak Unit, Thomas Dr, Liverpool L14 3PJ

Norris Green Hub, Falklands Approach, Liverpool L11 5BS (extra clinic)

Wednesday 7 December

Peasley Cross Hospital, Marshalls Cross Rd, St Helens, WA9 3DE

Whalley site, Mitton Rd, Whalley, Clitheroe BB7 9PE

Brooker Centre, Halton Hospital, Hospital Way, Runcorn WA7 2DA

Thursday 8 December

Old Swan Walk In Centre, Crystal Close, Liverpool, L13 2GA

V7 Kings Business Park, Kings Drive, Prescot, L34 1PJ

Friday 9 December

Hollins Park House, Hollins Lane, Warrington, WA2 8WA

Hartley Hospital, 1B Curzon Rd, Southport PR8 6PL

The Beat Walk in Centre, David Lewis St, Liverpool L1 4AF (extra clinic)

You will be given an Autumn COVID booster dose of a vaccine made by Pfizer (Comirnaty Bivalent Vaccine) or Moderna (Spikevax Bivalent Vaccine) regardless of what you received for your primary doses of COVID vaccine and dependant on stock availability within the Trust. These vaccines are the updated combination version of the booster vaccines – the combination vaccines include a half-dose of the previous vaccine combined with a half-dose of a vaccine against the Omicron variant. For a very small number of people another vaccine product may be advised by your doctor.

Both the previous and the combination vaccines boost protection very well, although the combination vaccines produce slightly higher levels of antibody against some strains of Omicron.

As we cannot predict which variants of COVID-19 will be circulating this winter, the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) have concluded that both types of vaccine can be used in adults, and that no one should delay vaccination to receive combination vaccines. You will be offered the right vaccine for you at the right time.

Please accept the vaccination that is offered to you as soon as you are able – it is important to have your booster and build up your protection against severe illness before the winter.

Source: UKHSA (A guide to the COVID-19 autumn booster Updated 28 September 2022

There’s some good advice for BAME communities from a resident and senior leaders in the Cheshire and Merseyside Partnership here.

You can find more information about the position of BIMA here.

Actor Adil Ray, OBE and others from the BAME community have come together to share an important message about the COVID-19 vaccine.

The Public Assessment Report contains all the scientific information about the trial and information on trial participants. You can read it in full here or read a summary of the report here

Sir Lenny Henry urges black Britons to get the COVID-19 vaccine

Miss Toli Onon talks about the COVID-19 vaccine and fertility - YouTube

The latest guidance for people receiving botox injections and cosmetic dermal fillers can be found here. 

Everyone working in care homes to be fully vaccinated under new law to protect residents - GOV.UK

New legislation means from October 2021 anyone working in a CQC registered care home in England, for residents requiring nursing or personal care must have two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine unless they have a medical exemption. It will apply to all workers employed directly by the care home or care home provider (on a full or part time basis), those employed by an agency and deployed by the care home, and volunteers deployed in the care home.

Those coming into care homes to do other work, for example healthcare workers, tradespeople, hairdressers, beauticians and CQC inspectors will also have to follow the new regulations, unless they have a medical exemption.

For those staff yet to have a vaccine visit: https://merseycarenhsfoundationtrust.nhsbookings.com/v2/ If you have any questions or concerns, please speak to your line manager who will be happy to help.

If you have a question or an issue with your second appointment, please email: vaccinations@merseycare.nhs.uk.

A message from Amanda Oates - 1 February 2022

On behalf of the Board of Directors, I would like to thank all of our colleagues who have worked tirelessly and supported the Trust throughout the ongoing pandemic. We would also like to thank those colleagues who have taken up the offer of a COVID-19 vaccination along with the huge efforts of those who have supported them to do so.

Implementing this Government policy has been a challenging time for all staff. I want to thank our colleagues for their leadership, integrity, kindness, support, and honesty. Aligning our principles of restorative just culture with civility and respect has been vital in how we addressed this mandate together. We acknowledge how difficult this has been and we are very grateful to you all.

As you know, Government recently passed legislation requiring vaccination as a condition of deployment (VCOD) which was due to come in to effect from 1 April 2022. However yesterday, the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care announced that this mandate is now being reconsidered. The full statement is available here. The Government’s decision to end vaccination as a condition of deployment is now subject to Parliamentary process. It will require further consultation and a vote to be passed to revoke the legislation and regulations.

The Health Secretary has also asked for several steps to be taken, these include:

  • Officials to consult on updating the Code of Practice which applies to all CQC registered providers of all health and social care in England
  • A review of NHS policies on the hiring of new staff and the deployment of existing staff, taking into account their vaccination status
  • Consult on strengthening requirements in relation to COVID-19 including the latest advice on infection prevention and control.

Simply speaking, VCOD has been paused subject to Government consultation. Following the consultation period, new guidance will be issued and we will provide colleagues with a further update.

I am aware that some staff, who we believed to be unvaccinated, or did not hold vaccination records for, will have received individual letters. When the outcome of the Government consultation has concluded, we will write to affected staff again and advise as to the next steps. If you have any queries or questions please don’t hesitate to get in touch via: Mandatoryvaccinations@merseycare.nhs.uk

Today, as colleagues will be aware, was the deadline for supportive conversations to have taken place. However, following this announcement I fully recognise colleagues may need support - now more than ever before. If anyone wants to seek support or revisit conversations with line managers, please do so. Don’t worry in silence or feel that you are alone.

Vaccination is the best way to protect yourself, your family, your colleagues and of course your patients from the virus. NHS England and NHS Improvement have always been clear that staff have a professional duty to do so. We continue to encourage staff vaccination and appointments are available at the vaccination centre at Maghull Health Park. Book yours by clicking this link or by accessing the NHS website for your nearest vaccination site.

If you need any additional support, please remember that staff support is available via 0151 330 8103 (Switch House) or 01925 664 010 (Hollins Park House) or through the Cheshire and Merseyside Resilience Hub via: www.cheshiremerseyresiliencehub.nhs.uk

 

 

INFORMATION ON THE PREVIOUS GOVERNMENT MANDATE

National guidance outlining the new requirement that mandates the COVID-19 vaccine as a condition of employment for all healthcare workers was issued by NHS England and NHS Improvement on 6 December 2021 and will come into effect on 1 April 2022. Unvaccinated staff will need to have had their first dose by 3 February 2022, to have received their second dose by the deadline.

Mersey Care as an NHS organisation must comply with this legislation. We are not alone in this, it’s something that all health and social care providers across public, independent and private sectors are facing. We want to approach it in the right way, together. We’re working closely with staff side colleagues and plan to bring you updates on this every week.

We are working hard to ensure we have all vaccination details accurately recorded. We will make direct contact, by letter to your home address, to all those who according to our records have not had both doses of the vaccine. If you have already received the vaccine and our records are incorrect, you will need to provide evidence through your NHS COVID pass. Further information as to how to do this will be included in the letter.

We are aware and appreciate that some colleagues have chosen not to have the COVID-19 vaccine for various reasons. We want to continue to support our colleagues, showing civility and respect, and help them to make an informed decision. There is plenty of  evidence and supporting information  available or please seek additional support and advice, where necessary, to enable you to make an informed choice.

Further guidance on mandatory vaccinations from Amanda Oates, Executive Director of Workforce

As expected, further national guidance for the mandatory vaccination process was issued on 14 January. The Trust has considered the guidance in partnership with staff side colleagues and a working group has been established to review all of the guidance. We have developed a set of working principles to ensure the Trust’s approach can support all of our colleagues in the most appropriate way. The table below shows the definitions for those colleagues who are in and out of scope of the provision (included/not included). Please note, this may be subject to change.

Letters started being posted to home addresses on 18 January and are being emailed to Mersey Care email addresses for all individuals who, according to our records, have not been fully vaccinated (first and second dose). The letter includes a list of questions and answers which have also been uploaded to YourSpace. If you receive this communication and can provide evidence that you are fully vaccinated, please show it to your manager so that records can be amended. If you think that you should have received a letter but have not, please speak to your manager.

If you have any questions, please speak to your manager or email: Mandatoryvaccinations@merseycare.nhs.uk

We appreciate that staff will have many questions about this, and we will arrange question and answer sessions. If you have not already done so, you will be encouraged to attend supportive conversations with your line manager. Please note, we are currently working with staff side colleagues regarding a process to manage concerns or queries regarding in and out of scope and we will communicate this as soon as it’s available.

 

Duties

 

What do we mean?

Who/what is not in scope?

Is the individual deployed for the provision of a CQC regulated activity (includes non-clinical activity)?

Most staff employed by the NHS will fall into this category. The activity cannot take place without the individual or role, that is, the care cannot be done if they are not there.

 

It must be linked to individual duties and part of substantive/normal duties (business as usual duties, not a redeployed role and/or duties due to COVID-19). It must be linked to contact as part of a patient/service users’ care pathway and treatment. Note, this includes non-clinical activity.

It is not based on a regulated premises/building.

 

If the care/activity can take place if the individual or role are not there, they are out of scope.

What is incidental contact?

Activity or care that is specific to the role as part of substantive/normal duties (not a redeployed role and/or duties due to COVID-19). For example, going into a clinical area, that is, attending a meeting or to work in an area accessed only through the clinical area where care or treatment takes place - such as through a ward.

 

This includes (but is not exhaustive):

  • Reception duties, if you see patients/service users face to face (even if behind a plastic screen, or in a clinical space or waiting area)
  • Office duties that are front of house, for example, walk in centres
  • Ancillary staff in clinical areas
  • Dropping off equipment at a patient/service user’s home
  • Security staff in a clinical area
  • Clinical temporary staff or bank staff
  • Clinical agency or locum staff
  • Contractors who work in clinical areas
  • Volunteers who attend clinical areas
  • Life rooms/social inclusion staff, as they support the care and treatment pathways of patients and service users. Mersey Care clinical staff and teams signpost patients and service users from a social prescribing and recovery learning perspective.

It is not:

  • Contact by entry or exit points
  • Bumping into patients/service users on a corridor or hospital grounds
  • Sharing a lift
  • Giving directions to patients/service users
  • Visiting the canteen for lunch/break
  • Coming into contact with patients/service users if your office/admin area is off a management corridor
  • Contact is in a non-patient/service user area, for example, V7 building. 

What will be classified as a reasonable adjustment?

It could be reasonable to request a meeting to be moved to another location or it could be possible to request an office move, but those requests cannot be deemed as unreasonable (please see unreasonable requests).

It is unreasonable:

  • If other colleagues’ normal duties are affected
  • Ways of working or pay is affected
  • Increased burden of administration/organisation around this.

 

It impacts one or more of the following:

  • Patient/service user experience/pathway and care
  • Resources, for example, Trust finances
  • Other staff
  • Wider organisation
  • Service provisions
  • Increased distance/travel/time for other staff to accommodate the request.

Who does the mandatory vaccine not apply to?

It does not apply to those who:

  • Are under the age of 18
  • Are medically exempt
  • Have participated in a clinical trial for a COVID-19 vaccine
  • Are pregnant and have a temporary exemption which will be valid until they are 16 weeks post birth
  • Are not in scope on the Vaccine as a Condition of Deployment (VCOD) regulations.

N/A

 

If you have any questions please email: Mandatoryvaccinations@merseycare.nhs.uk

If you need any additional support during this time please remember that staff support is available via 0151 330 8103 (Switch House) or 01925 664 010 (Hollins Park House) or through the Cheshire and Merseyside Resilience Hub via: www.cheshiremerseyresiliencehub.nhs.uk

Remember you have to be 28 days of being symptom free if you’ve had COVID-19 before having the vaccine. If you have any questions about the vaccine, in the first instance, please review the Q&As here.


Second dose vaccine

If you’ve not received an appointment for your second dose, or need to change it, or have any other questions, please email: vaccinations@merseycare.nhs.uk 

Status 

As a Trust we must inform Department of Health of how many of our staff are vaccinated. If you haven’t completed this short form already, will you please take two minutes to do so by clicking the link, then the green ‘add new submission’ button and answer a few questions:

Click here to visit the site and record here.

This will also allow us to make sure that if you’ve not had a vaccine, you will have the opportunity to discuss any concerns that you may have, or, let us know whether you’ve been vaccinated outside of the Trust. The form must be filled in using a Trust PC/laptop/tablet.  

Information for vaccination hesitant colleagues

Within the Trust we have: supportive conversations with managers, access to our specific email address for questions: Mandatoryvaccinations@merseycare.nhs.uk, access to our staff support services including psychological therapies and two specific question and answer sessions.

Information for vaccine hesitant colleagues

The Trust is finalising the policy regarding mandatory vaccinations and consistencyacross divisions. Within the Trust we have:

In addition to the support offered by Mersey Care, colleagues at Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (LUHFT) have established a dedicated referral route for all local NHS colleagues with unanswered clinical questions. This document should be used for individuals to refer in confidence by sending the completed form for first triage to: LUH.VACCINEHUB@liverpoolft.nhs.uk. On receipt, a team of vaccinators led by occupational health will conduct a first phone consultation with the individual where the team will offer advice and support and as clinically indicated, will be able to advise as to vaccine suitability. 

If in the event the employee is deemed unsuitable for vaccination, the vaccination team will signpost them to the mechanism by which they should apply for a medical exemption with the support of their GP. This is a short-term intervention aimed at supporting staff with their decision-making process. 

Also, NHS England and NHS Improvement have provided daily drop-in vaccine confidence Q&A sessions from through to 3 February 2022. These sessions are for all staff to attend and will offer an opportunity to ask specific questions you might have regarding COVID-19 vaccines.

Each of the drops-in sessions will be tailored towards a specific audience and hosted by a relevant clinical professional who will answer questions and signpost you to any additional information. These sessions will provide a safe and supportive environment and dates and themes are:

  • Saturday, 29 January: 7pm to 8pm - Vaccines and Your Faith
  • Sunday, 30 January: 7pm to 8pm - Vaccines and Your Faith
  • Monday, 31 January: 12 noon to 1pm - Vaccines for Nursing and Midwifery Staff
  • Tuesday, 1 February: 1pm to 2pm - Vaccines and Fertility
  • Wednesday, 2 February: 12 noon to 1pm - Vaccines for Healthcare Students
  • Thursday, 3 February: 4pm to 5pm - Vaccines and the Science.

To register, go to: https://www.events.england.nhs.uk/events/staff-vaccination-daily-q-and-a

Please find helpful links with further information:

Blood clots

The MHRA statement.

The  AstraZeneca statement 

Fertility

Please find resources below that may be helpful:

Breastfeeding, fertility and pregnancy:

  • Advice for pregnant women, women trying to become pregnant and those who are breast feeding can be found on the GOV.UK website here
  • If you are concerned about the impact of the vaccine on fertility, please click here to see the latest advice from the Royal College of Midwives and the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists
  • For advice to people currently undergoing or considering fertility treatment please see advice from Liverpool Women’s Hospital, Hewitt Fertility Centre here
  • Two experts from Liverpool Women’s Hospital have put the following short video together to provide some reassurance on issues relating to fertility and pregnancy. You can hear from Alice Bird, Consultant Obstetrician and Andrew Drakeley, Consultant Gynaecologist and Clinical Director for the Hewitt Fertility Centre in a three minute video here.

 

Dr Alice Bird, consultant obstetrician at Liverpool Women’s Hospital, talks about the COVID-19 vaccine and pregnancy in this short video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1G9wTksLu8U

If you’re not eligible to be vaccinated at our clinic, please call 119 or go online to register for your vaccine appointment. You can also attend walk in, mobile or pop up vaccination clinics in your area. For more information about the COVID-19 vaccination in pregnancy, please read here.

Suspected adverse drug reactions and how to report them

The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) request that all suspected side effects to COVID-19 vaccines are reported via the dedicated coronavirus Yellow Card site

Suspected side effects should be reported using one of the following routes:

Your GP must be informed of any adverse reaction to a vaccine so it can be recorded in your medical records. Similarly, if reporting sickness absence due to side effects, please let your line manager know.

What to report - all suspected vaccine induced side effects, even minor effects (sore arm, headache, feeling unwell). The vaccines are new and it is especially important that they are monitored closely and any suspected incidents are quickly reported.

When to report - at any point following administration of the vaccine. This can be immediately after the vaccine is administered or at any time in the following days or weeks. There is no time limit. Side effects can be reported after the first dose, after the second dose or after both doses if necessary.

When reporting side effects to vaccines or medicines, patients and healthcare professionals are encouraged to provide as much information as possible, the MHRA states that the following information should be provided:

  • Information on the person who has experienced the side effect (essential)
  • The name of the vaccine suspected to have caused the side effect (essential). Include the vaccine brand and batch/lot number if available
  • A description of the side effect (essential)
  • Any other medicines being taken around the same time, including non-prescription and herbal remedies (if available, if not please do not let this prevent you submitting a report)
  • Any other health condition that the person who experienced the side effect may have (if available, if not please do not let this prevent you submitting a report).

For further information in relation to this, please contact: Debbie.bowden@merseycare.nhs.uk

Vegan/vegetarian friendly?

There is no material of foetal or animal origin, including eggs, in either vaccine. All ingredients are published in healthcare information on the MHRA’s website. For the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine information is available here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/regulatory-approval-of-pfizer-biontech-vaccine-for-covid-19

Hesitant?

If you’re still not convinced, hear from Deputy Chief Medical Officer, Professor Jonathan Van-Tam.

Please find a link to information on the COVID-19 vaccine in easy read for sharing.

General resources for specific groups:

1. A Facebook post shared thousands of times has claimed that “the new vaccine for COVID-19... will literally alter your DNA. It will wrap itself into your system. You will essentially become a genetically modified human being".

mRNA vaccines work by introducing a molecule into the body which instructs cells to build a disease-specific antigen. The antigen is then recognised by the immune system which produces antibodies to fight the real thing. It doesn’t change the body’s DNA or “wrap itself into your system”. mRNA vaccines are generally viewed positively as they are cheap, and don’t involve using part of a virus, like some traditional vaccines.

2. Facebook posts have claimed that Government is planning to change the law to allow untested and unlicensed vaccines to be given to the public - which is untrue. Any vaccine given to the public has to go through several stages of testing. Tom Phillips, Editor of FullFact, said: "Vaccines are some of the most scrutinised forms of medical interventions. The data says that they are safe and effective. They have side effects, but all medicines have side effects and the benefit of using them far outweighs the small risks that there are."

3. A Facebook post claiming to show how a “mandatory coronavirus vaccine” would be enforced has been shared hundreds of times. As it stands, no vaccines are mandatory in the UK. It will be up to Government ministers to decide if a COVID-19 vaccine would become a legal requirement. Health Secretary Matt Hancock previously said that he would like and encourage people to get a vaccine when it is available but has not said he would make it mandatory for everyone.

4. False news reports have been circulating online claiming that Dr Elisa Granato, one of the first participants in the UK's human trials of a possible vaccine for the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, has died shortly after being injected with the vaccine. But Dr Granato is not dead and the reports are fake. She took to Twitter in a bid to stop the misinformation from being shared.

5. Claims of any effect of COVID-19 vaccination on fertility are speculative and not supported by any data. Dr Edward Morris, President at the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, said: “We want to reassure women that there is no evidence to suggest that COVID-19 vaccines will affect fertility …There is no biologically plausible mechanism by which current vaccines would cause any impact on women’s fertility. Evidence has not been presented that women who have been vaccinated have gone on to have fertility problems.” Follow the link for more.

Scam messages

Lots of people are getting in touch with screenshots of a new scam emails around vaccines. Anything that asks for bank details is a scam. Do not click these links. Please forward the email to: report@phishing.gov.uk

There will be an additional data collection related specifically to student vaccination status, with universities in February 2022. Health Education England has published a series of frequently asked questions (FAQs) related to students, accessible by following this link. Please note, these FAQs only relate to nursing, midwifery and allied health professional students.

Overseas vaccination validation

From 9 February, colleagues in Cheshire and Merseyside can attend St Helen’s Rugby Club mass vaccination site for overseas vaccine verification. Appointments can be booked via the 119 helpline or online on the national booking system using this link.

For anyone who has had one of the four vaccines overseas, either: Jannsen, Moderna Pfizer or AstraZeneca, there is also a service based at the Etihad Stadium, Etihad Campus, Manchester, M11 3FF, where the vaccine can be attached to your records. You can book an appointment in Manchester via: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus-vaccination/tell-nhs-about-coronavirus-vaccinations-abroad/ or walk-in but there may be queues.

Why is it so important that I receive both vaccines this year?

Flu vaccination is especially important this year as more people are likely to get flu this winter. This is because less people will have built up immunity against the virus this year due to measures put in place for COVID-19 (mask-wearing, physical and safe distancing, restrictions on international travel).

This is also the first year that flu will co-circulate alongside COVID-19. Research has shown that if you catch both viruses at the same time you are at increased risk of getting seriously ill. The best way to avoid catching and spreading flu is by having the vaccination before the flu season starts.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) has reviewed available data and provided the advice that COVID-19 boosters are first offered to the most vulnerable to provide maximum protection during the winter months. This includes frontline health and social care workers. It is vital that you maintain protection against severe illness from COVID-19, specifically hospitalisation and deaths during winter. The aim is to protect those who are most vulnerable and to protect the NHS.

How effective is the flu vaccine?

The flu vaccine will help prevent you getting flu and is your best protection against the virus. It will not stop all flu viruses but if you do get flu after vaccination, it’s likely to be milder and shorter-lived than it would otherwise have been. It takes between 10 and 14 days for your immune system to respond fully after you’ve had the flu jab.

How effective is the COVID-19 vaccine?

The vaccination programme has already substantially reduced the risk from severe COVID-19 in the UK population.

Can I still catch COVID-19 after having the vaccine?

The COVID-19 vaccination will reduce the chance of you suffering from COVID-19 disease. It may take a few days for your body to build up some protection from the booster. Like all medicines, no vaccine is completely effective – some people may still get COVID-19 despite having a vaccination, but this should be less severe.

Can I have my flu vaccine and COVID-19 booster in the same appointment?

Yes, as a healthcare worker you are eligible to receive both vaccines and therefore may be offered both jabs in the same appointment. However, it is important that you do not delay receiving either vaccine if you’re unable to get them at the same time. It is vital that you are fully protected as soon as possible.

Is the NHS confident the vaccines are safe?

Yes. The NHS would not offer any vaccinations to the public until it is safe to do so. The MHRA, the official UK regulator authorising licensed use of medicines and vaccines by healthcare professionals, has said these vaccines are safe and highly effective, and we have full confidence in their expert judgement and processes.

As with any medicine, vaccines are highly regulated products. There are checks at every stage in the development and manufacturing process, and continued monitoring once it has been authorised and is being used in the wider population.

Will there be any side effects from the booster vaccine?

As with your previous dose the common side effects are the same for all COVID-19 vaccines used in the UK, and include:

  • having a painful, heavy feeling and tenderness in the arm where you had your injection. This tends to be worst around one to two days after the vaccine
  • feeling tired
  • headache
  • general aches, or mild flu like symptoms.

You can rest and take paracetamol (follow the dose advice in the packaging) to help make you feel better. Although feeling feverish is not uncommon for two to three days, a high temperature is unusual and may indicate you have COVID-19 or another infection.

Although a fever can occur within a day or two of vaccination, if you have any other COVID-19 symptoms or your fever lasts longer, stay at home and arrange to have a test. Symptoms following vaccination normally last less than a week. If your symptoms seem to get worse or if you are concerned, you can call NHS 111.

If you had serious side effects after any previous dose you may be advised to avoid or delay further vaccination. You should discuss this with your doctor or specialist.

Will I get any side effects from the flu vaccine?

The most common side effects from the flu vaccine can be a slight temperature or your arm may feel a little sore where you had the injection. Other side effects are rare.

I’ve only just had my first or second COVID-19 vaccine, can I have a booster jab?

No, the JCVI advises that the booster vaccine should be offered no earlier than 91 days after completion of the primary vaccine course.

What type of vaccine will the COVID-19 booster be? What if it’s different to the one I have had?

After reviewing data on booster responses from different combinations of COVID-19 vaccines, JCVI advises a preference for the Pfizer-BioNTech (vaccine to be offered as the booster dose irrespective of which type of vaccine was used in the primary schedule). There is good evidence that the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine is well tolerated as a booster dose and will provide a strong booster response.

Alternatively, individuals may be offered a half dose of the Moderna vaccine, which should be well tolerated and is also likely to provide a strong booster response. A half dose of Moderna vaccine is advised over a full dose due to the levels of reactogenicity (side effects) seen following boosting with a full dose in clinical trials.

Where mRNA vaccines cannot be offered, for example, due to contraindication, vaccination with the AstraZeneca vaccine may be considered for those who received AstraZeneca vaccine in the primary course. More detail is available in the green book.

Can I have the booster if I haven’t completed the first vaccination course?

No, you need to finish the first course of your vaccination.

I haven’t yet had the COVID-19 vaccination, can I still get my first jabs?

Everyone that is eligible that hasn’t already had their first or second COVID-19 vaccination is still able to get vaccinated.

How do I get my COVID-19 booster?

Your employer will provide more information on how to get your flu vaccine and COVID-19 booster.

Can I have the flu vaccine if I’m pregnant?

Yes, all pregnant women are recommended to receive the flu vaccine. There is evidence that suggests pregnant women are at increased risk from complications if they contract flu, the flu vaccine is the best protection against this.

Can I have the COVID-19 booster if I’m pregnant?

Yes. If you are pregnant and in one of the groups that the JCVI has recommended for the boosters, you are eligible to receive a booster, no earlier than 91 days after completion of the first course of vaccination.

I had the flu vaccination last year. Do I need to have it again?

Yes. The viruses that cause flu can change every year, which means flu (and the vaccine) this year may be different from last year.

Do I still need to get my flu jab if I’ve had both of my COVID-19 vaccines?

Yes, the COVID-19 vaccine does not protect you from the flu, and vice versa. If you are eligible for both vaccines you should have them both.

I’ve recently had COVID-19, can I still have my flu vaccine?

If you’ve had COVID-19, it’s still safe to have the flu vaccine. It will still be effective at helping to prevent flu.