Over 1 million people in the Midlands and 9 million people in England have now received the Covid-19 vaccine.
About the Vaccine
Vaccines reduce the spread of infectious diseases and even get rid of some altogether. Vaccination is the most important thing you can do to protect your community against serious illnesses.
Are they safe? Have they been tested enough?
All steps in the usual vaccine development process were rigorously followed for the Covid-19 vaccines. They have undergone months of testing and the MHRA’s (Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency) approval processes means you can be sure that they meet strict safety standards and offer high levels of protection. It would not be approved for use by the MHRA if it wasn’t safe and effective.
Won’t it give me Covid?
Like all other vaccines, the Covid-19 vaccine CANNOT give you the illness it is protecting you from. You might experience mild side effects, such as a sore arm, after having your jab – but you won’t get Covid.
I’ve had my jab, can I now do what I like?
No; it it’s really important that once you’ve had your jab, you continue to follow the rules that are in place to stop the spread of Covid-19, to protect yourselves and others and to bring the infection rate down. So that means following the latest government guidance and practising Hands, Face, Space.
The first dose will give you good protection from Covid-19 after two or three weeks, but you’ll need the second dose, given between three and 12 weeks later, to receive longer lasting protection.
Do the vaccines contain egg or animal products?
No, the approved Covid-19 vaccines do not contain any animal products or egg.
Can I have the vaccine if I’m pregnant or breastfeeding?
There’s no suggestion it’s unsafe to have the vaccine if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding. But more clinical evidence from trials is needed before you will be offered it in pregnancy.
Are there any side effects?
Side effects from having the vaccines are mild and won’t last very long. They could include a sore arm where the needle went in, tiredness or a headache. You can take painkillers, such as paracetamol, if you need to.
Remember, the vaccine is only available on the NHS and is free of charge. The NHS will never ask you for details about your bank account or to pay for the vaccine. If you receive an email, text message or phone call purporting to be from the NHS and you are asked to provide financial details, this is a scam.
- The NHS will never ask you for your bank account or card details.
- The NHS will never ask you for your PIN or banking password.
- The NHS will never arrive unannounced at your home to administer the vaccine.
- The NHS will never ask you to prove your identity by sending copies of personal documents such as your passport, driving licence, bills or pay slips.
If you believe you are the victim of a fraud, please report this to Action Fraud as soon as possible by calling 0300 123 2040 or visiting www.actionfraud.police.uk.
False information, when shared, can take on a life of its own and have serious consequences. Recently there has been a lot of false information about coronavirus and the new vaccines designed to tackle it. It’s not always easy to spot.
The SHARE checklist is an easy tool to pass on to people in your community to help them know what to look out for before they like, comment or share information they come across online.
If you’d like to share vaccine information with your organisation or community, you can download the COVID-19 Vaccine Comms Pack for Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise organisations here.