Vaccinations for COVID-19

The UK’s largest vaccination campaign is underway
Covid-19 vaccine.JPG

Regularly updated, this webpage can give you the latest information on:

1. NHS urges people to attend vaccination appointments

2. How to get the vaccine, eligibility, details of walk in & mobile vaccination services, second doses and booster vaccinations

3. Vaccination passports.

4. Key messages for everyone.

5. Links to Frequently Asked Questions, 'fact check' about vaccines, and other sources of information.

6. Details of the roll-out of the vaccine. This includes information on GP sites, hospital hubs, large vaccination centres, and roving vaccination services.

7. The order in which people will get the vaccine.

8. Attending your appointment. What to expect at your appointment, and how you will be contacted.

9. Information about the vaccines, their effectiveness, and safety (including side effects).

10. Details of vaccination scams to look out for.

11. How Brighton and Hove Healthwatch is helping, and how to contact us with your questions.

12. Information on the vaccine roll out in East and West Sussex

13. Further information and resources


To date, almost 46 million people have now received their first COVID-19 vaccine dose, whilst over 34 million have had their second dose.

Brighton has seen a large increase in positive cases amongst 15-29 year olds in the last few weeks, and we have a higher rate than the South East and the whole of England. We also have a lower take up of the vaccine than East and West Sussex.

The NHS in Sussex is therefore calling for all adults to get their vaccination appointments as soon as possible. The government may lift COVID-19 restrictions on 19 July if they think it’s safe and the more of us that have had the vaccine, the more likely that is to happen. 

The NHS has reiterated that the benefits of the vaccination, outweighs any risk and everyone should get their vaccine. The only way to protect yourself and loved ones, and to return to normal, is for everyone to get vaccinated. Find out how to below.

Find out more about the Sussex vaccination programme:

2.  HOW TO GET THE VACCINE, eligibility, details of walk in & mobile vaccination services, second doses and booster vaccinations

Everyone aged 18 and over can get the vaccine.

You can book appointments at the Brighton Centre and Brighton Racecourse by clicking this link 

Or by calling 119 (free). Or you can wait to be contacted by your GP

*** Please note the following ***

The National Booking System both online at or over the phone by calling 119 only shows services with available appointments. If a vaccination centre or service currently does not have any available appointments it will not show up in the list when you log into the system.
We encourage eligible people who have been invited to receive their vaccination to keep checking the National Booking System for appointments. 



There are lots of free, walk in and mobile vaccination services available. There is no need to book an appointment, and it takes just minutes. For more information click below to visit a dedicated webpage.

Click here

Second doses

Getting your second dose is really important to make sure you have the highest level of protection.

Studies have found the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine to be 96% effective against hospitalisation after two doses, while the Oxford-AztraZenaca is 92% effective.

People aged 40 and over are now able to have their second jab from eight weeks after their first – moving it forward from the original 12 week period. This extends the group after people aged 50 and over were able to do this last month.

If you have booked your appointments through the national booking system, you can use the website or call 119 to move your second dose forward.

If you had your first vaccination from a GP led team, you will be contacted as quickly as possible to rearrange your second dose.


Booster vaccinations

All adults aged 50 and over in the UK are likely to be eligible for a third booster dose of a Covid vaccine in the autumn. 

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation interim advice is that any potential COVID-19 booster programme should be offered in 2 stages from September, starting with those most at risk from serious disease. 

This includes care home residents, people aged over 70, frontline health and social care workers, clinically extremely vulnerable adults and those who are immunosuppressed.

In Stage 2, the following groups are recommended to be offered a booster dose as soon as practicable after Stage 1, with equal emphasis on the flu vaccine where eligible:

  • all adults aged 50 years and over
  • all adults aged 16 to 49 years who are in an influenza or COVID-19 at-risk group
  • adult household contacts of immunosuppressed individuals

Read more about the JCVI guidance


The NHS App will be available to use as a vaccine passport from Monday 17 May 2021.

A paper version will also be available by calling 119.

Please do not need to telephone your GP Practice as they are unable to provide vaccine passports.

The NHS App is separate to the NHS COVID-19 App, which is used for contact tracing.

You can already use the NHS App to book appointments, repeat prescriptions and see your full medical records.

Your vaccine passport will only show when you have had both doses.

If you don’t have the NHS App, download the NHS App now. It will record when you have had both doses of the vaccine and automatically create a vaccine passport which will be available from Monday 17 May 2021.

ou can read more: 

Visit this dedicated Healthwatch webpage for more information


We all have an important part to play:

  • please do not contact the NHS, including your GP, to seek a vaccine, they will contact you. It will help the booking process to have your NHS number to hand;
  • when you are contacted, please attend your booked appointments;
  • once you have had your first vaccination you will receive a further appointment to receive the second dose, and
  • please continue to follow all the guidance to control the virus and save lives. 

Information for people who have been recently vaccinated

The COVID-19 vaccination will reduce the chance of you getting the COVID-19 disease and lower the likelihood of you passing it onto others. It may take around two to three weeks for your body to build up some protection from the first dose of vaccine.

Although you should get good protection from the first dose, having the second dose should give you longer lasting protection against the virus.

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.

The vaccine cannot give you the COVID-19 infection, and two doses will reduce your chance of becoming seriously ill. 

To protect yourself and your family, friends and colleagues you still need to:

  • practice social distancing
  • wear a face mask
  • wash your hands carefully and frequently
  • follow the current guidance

5. FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS, 'FACT CHECK' and other sources of information.

The Sussex Health and Care Partnership have produced the following webpages to help you understand what will happen next. these are being regularly updated:

To report any adverse reactions following your vaccination click here

For data on the number of vaccinations click this link NHS England published data on vaccinations (we fall under the Sussex and East Surrey Partnership)

For enquiries about COVID-19 vaccinations - please look first at the website at

If you cannot find the answer you need, you can contact the team on:

(Note that you cannot book a vaccination appointment using the above)

For straightforward steps to keep yourself and others safe and get help if you need it, visit  


To date across Sussex:

  • Over 1.9 million first and second doses of the COVID-19 vaccination have been delivered (over 1.1 million first doses and more than 836,000 second doses)
  • anyone aged 18 can contact the national booking service directly to arrange an appointment. Please go online - or call 119.  Or wait to be contacted by your GP.
  • Sussex met the government target to vaccinate older care home residents by the end of January 2021, and to offer this to everyone in the top 9 priority groups by April.

There are a number of ways in which the vaccination is being rolled out to our communities. Some further information is contained in the attachment at the end of this page:

(A) Walk in and mobile vaccination services. There's no need to book for these sessions, simply turn up with some ID and your NHS number if you know it. There's a full list of all the walk-in sessions on our website.

(B) A GP-led vaccination service involves groups of local GP practices working together to provide the vaccination to their collective patients at one location. This means that you may not receive the vaccination at your local GP and you may be required to travel to a different location nearby. All GP practices in the city are involved.  GP led services are not running every day of the week and most are running specific days in line with the availability of the vaccine.

(C) Hospital hubs – local hospitals across the country have delivered the vaccine to people over 80 who have attended for a planned appointment and frontline health and care staff. People only receive vaccinations in this way if they have an outpatient or inpatient appointment at your hospital.

(D) Roving service –  GP-led services and the Sussex Community NHS Foundation Trust have been taking the vaccine to residents and staff in care homes for older people and those who are housebound. You will be contacted when an appointment is available.

(E) Large vaccination centres – Vaccination centres are larger facilities located with good transport links and serve a much wider population. The Brighton Centre opened on 25th February.

(F) Community pharmacy-led vaccination services.  The first pharmacies in Sussex have opened. High street stores capable of delivering large volumes while allowing for social distancing are initially being selected to give the best geographical spread.

More information is available below.

(A) Hospital hubs

Hospital hub vaccination services in Sussex were launched at the Royal Sussex County Hospital in Brighton on 8th December 2020. Hospital hubs are at:

B) At a GP led vaccination service

Current GP vaccination services are available at:

Brighton Racecourse for patients at Albion Street Surgery, Allied Medical Practice - School House Surgery and Church Surgery, Arch healthcare, Ardingly Court Surgery, Beaconsfield Medical Practice, Broadway Surgery, Park Crescent Health Centre, Pavilion Surgery, Preston Park Surgery, Regency Surgery, Saltdean and Rottingdean Medical Practice, Ship Street Surgery, Stanford Medical Centre, St Luke’s Surgery, St Peter’s Medical Centre, The Avenue Surgery, The Haven Practice, Warmdene Surgery, Wellsbourne Healthcare CIC, Woodingdean Medical Centre

County Oak Medical Centre for patients at Brighton Station Health Centre, Carden Surgery, Montpelier Surgery, Seven Dials Medical Centre, University of Sussex Health Centre

Portslade Health Centre for patients at Brighton Health and Wellbeing Centre, Benfield Valley Healthcare Hub, Charter Medical Group, Hove Medical Centre, Links Road Surgery, Mile Oak Medical Centre, Portslade Health Centre, Trinity Medical Centre, Wish Park Surgery.

If you have not yet been approached about having the COVID-19 vaccination, please read the information: why you are being asked to wait

C) Large vaccination centres 

Read more about What to expect when you arrive at the Brighton Centre for your appointment including information in Easy Read, and other formats and languages. Appointments for The Brighton Centre, and large vaccination centres, is through the national booking system. People who have received a letter can either use the national booking system to arrange an appointment at a large-scale vaccination centre or pharmacy, or wait to be contacted by their local vaccination service (supported by your GP practice) to arrange an appointment. 

D) Pharmacies

Appointments are being made through the national booking system and eligible people have been starting to receive letters this week to invite them to go online or call the national number to book their place. When people receive a letter, they have a choice to use the national booking system to arrange an appointment at one of these pharmacies or a large vaccination centre. Alternatively, they can wait to be contacted by their local GP-led service to arrange an appointment there, if they prefer. A pharmacy service is being offered by Kamsons in Mouslecoomb.


You will be contacted by the first NHS service that is able to offer you a vaccination. This may be your GP, one of the hospital hubs, or another NHS service.

In summary

  • Vaccinations were prioritised, with those most at risk of complications from COVID-19 being offered the vaccine first. The Government has published information about how groups will be prioritised here.
  • The government met its target of offering a vaccine to the most vulnerable by 15 April and is on track to offer a first dose to all adults by 19 July, 2 weeks earlier than planned. By 19 July, all those aged 40 and over and the clinically extremely vulnerable, who received their first dose by mid-May, will have been offered their second dose.
  • From 18th June, anyone aged 18 and over can access their vaccinations.
  • If you are aged 18 or over and have not had your vaccine, you can go online - or call 119 to book your vaccination appointment.

This priority list is as follows:

This follows advice from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI).

Priority Group 1. Residents in a care home for older adults and their carers.

Priority Group 2. All those 80 years of age and over, and frontline health and social care workers.

Priority Group 3. All those 75 years of age and over.

Priority Group 4. All those 70 years of age and over and Clinically extremely vulnerable individuals.

Priority Group 5. Anyone aged 65 or over. 

Priority group 6 – ‘at risk’. People aged 16 or over who are classed as ‘at risk’ are being contacted by their local GP-led vaccination service to have their vaccinations.  People with a learning disability are included in Group 6.

If you are unsure as to whether you are ‘at risk’, a good indicator is that such people are usually called by their GP practice every year to have their free flu jab. See more information about the ‘at risk’ group

Note that those in the ‘at risk’ group are not able to book online or by phone and must await their invitation.    

If you have a learning disability and want the vaccine, talk to your GP to make sure you are registered. Read more about the Learning Disability Register here from Mencap

Conditions which are included in the Group 6 'at risk' category includes: blood cancer (such as leukaemia, lymphoma or myeloma); diabetes; dementia; a heart problem; a chest complaint or breathing difficulties, including bronchitis, emphysema or severe asthma; a kidney disease; a liver disease lowered immunity due to disease or treatment (such as HIV infection, steroid medication, chemotherapy or radiotherapy); rheumatoid arthritis, lupus or psoriasis; liver disease; have had an organ transplant; had a stroke or a transient ischaemic attack (TIA); a neurological or muscle wasting condition; a severe or profound learning disability; a problem with your spleen, eg sickle cell disease, or you have had your spleen removed; are seriously overweight (BMI of 40 and above); are severely mentally.

  • The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine is authorised in those aged 16 years and over, and the AstraZeneca and Moderna vaccines are only authorised for use in those aged 18 years and over. 

Priority group 6 – informal carers.  Note that where a cared for person is classed as ‘at risk’ and is housebound, and where it is clinically appropriate to do so, their carer will be vaccinated at the same time, if present. More information about vaccinations for unpaid carers can be found here.

Priority Group 7. All those 60 years of age and over. 

Priority Group 8. All those 55 years of age and over. 

Priority Group 9. All those 50 years of age and over. 

Priority Group 10. Those aged 18 and over can access their vaccine. Please go online to the national booking service or call 119. Or wait to be contacted by your GP.

Everyone else under 18 are not yet eligible.

Timings of the vaccine roll-out

The government has stated it's plan for: 

  • the first vaccine dose to be offered to all those in the top 4 priority groups by 15th February - now met.
  • all care homes to have been offered the vaccine by 15th February - now met.
  • all those in groups 1-9 by mid-April - now met.
  • everyone aged 19-49 by 19 July will have been offered their second dose.


  • Information about the roll-out in different formats are available at the bottom of this page.


Advice on traveling to have your vaccine

Under the national guidance, it is permissible to receive a lift from someone.

There are also community transport providers offering this support in terms of transport for medical appointments. You can find information about community and non-emergency transport on the Brighton and Hove City Council website.

For those requiring assistance with transport, we are aware of the following options:

  • For those who need to drive to the  Brighton Centre, free parking for 1 hour will be available at Churchill Square Orange Carpark, next door to The Brighton Centre
  • NHS Volunteer Responders 8am to 8pm 7 days a week, phone number 0808 196 3646. (There could be up to 15/20min wait for the call to be answered due to demand).
  • Brighton buses have introduced a live journey planning tool so you can see how busy your bus is and you can decide whether to travel or to wait for the next bus instead In partnership with local councils, they are accepting concessionary passes for travel 24 hours a day, until further notice, to help those travelling to vaccination centres.
  • Please also see the poster below which contains information about a free transport option to help people get to their COVID-19 vaccination appointment.

How you will be contacted

You will be contacted by the first NHS service that is able to offer you a vaccination. This may be your GP or the NHS national booking service.

GPs will invite their patients to get vaccinated at their local GP-led vaccination service (see above). You may be contacted by telephone, by letter, or by SMS/text message.

Appointments at The Brighton Centre and also the Brighton racecourse can be made through the national booking service.

For the second vaccination you will receive a text and/or an email within 12 weeks of having your first jab. This will confirm the date and time of your next appointment. You may receive this confirmation at time of leaving, but usually this will be later on.

Anyone receiving a letter from the national booking service can choose whether to book an appointment at the vaccination centre (online or by phone), or wait until they are contacted by their GP for an appointment at their local vaccination service if that would be more convenient. The letter contains all the details you will need to book your appointment at a large vaccination centre.

If you receive two invitations, you can choose which is more convenient for you. In time, as more vaccination centres come online, there will be more options available through the national booking system. 

If you miss a call to offer you the vaccine you will remain on the list and the practice/team will contact you again.  If they cannot get through to you by telephone they will contact you by letter. 

What to expect at your appointment

You will be asked to attend the same site to receive both vaccinations. 

You will be given two doses of the same vaccination (i.e. 2x Pfizer, or 2x Oxford, or 2x Moderna). You cannot ask to choose one type of vaccine over another. They are all effective.

You will be screened for potential allergic reactions before getting vaccinated. All vaccinators will have the training they need to deal with any rare cases of adverse reactions, and all venues will be equipped to care for people who need it.

After you have received the vaccine you will be given a card or paper indicating the date of your vaccination, type of vaccine and batch. Please keep hold of this.    

Your GP will automatically be informed that you have been vaccinated.

Access to language support at vaccination centres and services.

If you do not speak English as your first language, interpreting support is available at all of our vaccination sites and can be easily arranged to support you during your appointment.
Face to face interpreting is available and can be requested from local organisations including Vandu and Sussex Interpreting Services.
They can be contacted using the details below:

Telephone interpreting is also available on site at all services.
If you are d/Deaf, face to face British Sign Language (BSL) interpreting is also available by self-referral from Action Deafness and a video relay service using Signlive is available at all GP led local vaccination services, pharmacy led services and the vaccination centres.


You can read the UK government's UK COVID-19 vaccines delivery plan and the vaccines delivery plan.  

The UK has secured early access to over 500 million doses of the most promising vaccines so far. To date, four vaccines have been approved for use by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA):

  1. Pfizer/BioNTech. The UK has ordered 100 million doses, enough to vaccinate up to a third of the population, with the majority of doses anticipated in the first half of 2021. The vaccine began its roll out in December.  Some of these will to be used as part of a booster programme in the autumn.
  2. Oxford/Astra Zeneca vaccineThe the UK has ordered 100 million doses. Read more about this vaccine by clicking here. The vaccine began its roll out on Monday 4th January 2021.  
  3. Moderna.  This works in a similar way to the Pfizer one. Supplies of the new jab are being rolled out from April. The UK has pre-ordered 17 million doses.
  4. A single-dose Covid vaccine made by Janssen has been approved for use in the UK by the medicines regulator (28 May). The vaccine, which was 85% effective in stopping severe illness from Covid-19 in trials, has met expected safety standards. Twenty million doses have been ordered for the UK and will arrive later this year.

Other vaccines are in different stages of development, and it is hoped that others may also be approved for use by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA). The government has already preordered some of these vaccines.

Novavax (28th Januray) has published positive data from the UK phase 3 study of its COVID-19 vaccine candidate, showing it to be 89.3% effective in preventing coronavirus in participants. The UK has secured 60 million doses, with manufacturing set to take place on Teesside. 

Three vaccines will be given in two doses (Pfizer, AstraZeneca and Moderna), whilst the Janssen vaccine is given as a single dose. 

We have produced a short guide to the different vaccines which is available at the end of this page.


The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) has indicated:

  • Short-term vaccine efficacy from the first dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine is calculated at around 90%

  • Short-term vaccine efficacy from the first dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine is calculated at around 70%, with high protection against severe disease

  • The vaccines offer considerable protection after the first dose has been given, but full protection should begin one to two week after the second dose.

How safe are the vaccines?

The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) regulates medicines and is responsible for the regulation of the COVID-19 vaccines. They have confirmed that people should continue to receive the COVID-19 vaccine AstraZeneca. A rigorous scientific review ha sbeen undertaken and the available evidence does not suggest that blood clots in veins (venous thromboembolism) are caused by COVID-19 Vaccine AstraZeneca.  The benefits of the vaccine in preventing COVID-19, with its associated risk of hospitalisation and death, far outweigh the risks of side effects. People should go and get their COVID-19 vaccine when asked to do so.
Read the MHRA statement in full

You can read a weekly report covering adverse reactions to approved COVID-19 vaccines by clicking here

Part of the monitoring role includes reviewing reports of suspected side effects. Any member of the public or health professional can submit suspected side effects through the Yellow Card scheme

Vaccination is the single most effective way to reduce deaths and severe illness from COVID-19.  The vaccines currently in use have been authorised for supply by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) following a thorough review of safety, quality and efficacy information from clinical trials.  

All vaccines and medicines have some side effects. These reactions were usually mild or moderate in intensity and resolved within a few days after vaccination. The most frequently reported adverse reactions in trials were injection-site tenderness, injection-site pain, headache, fatigue, myalgia, malaise, pyrexia (fever), chills, arthralgia, and nausea; these were each reported in more than 1 in 10 people. These types of reactions reflect the normal immune response triggered by the body to the vaccines. They are typically seen with most types of vaccine and tend to resolve within a day or two. The nature of reported suspected side effects is broadly similar across age groups.


Fraudsters are sending ‘phishing’ emails and texts, making cold calls, and directly door stepping people with offers of a COVID-19 vaccine. Often, they claim to be from the NHS and direct victims to an authentic looking website where they are asked for their personal details. In some cases, the victim is told that someone will attend their home to administer the vaccine. The fraudster will typically take money from the victim by charging for the vaccine or by harvesting their personal and financial details which they will use to sell or take money from their bank account. Elderly and vulnerable people who are often isolated, particularly due to the COVID-19 pandemic, are often a target for these scams.

In other cases, people are receiving a notification of their ‘vaccination appointment’ and are being asked to confirm it by clicking on a link. This looks very similar to the genuine texts being sent by GP practice vaccination teams and the NHS is worried people will be conned by them or will not respond to their genuine invitations.

The NHS has this advice for patients:

  • An official NHS text message will include details of your GP practice. It will also include details of the local vaccination service and its location.
  • Scam text messages and emails are not including local information such as your GP practice details or where you are invited to attend.
  • The COVID-19 vaccination is only available by the NHS and it is free – you will never be asked to pay for it or your bank details.

If you are worried about a text message you have received, please be assured you will remain on your GP practice list for vaccination if you do not respond.

Sussex Police is reminding people that if they receive a call, they believe to be fraudulent, to hang up. If a suspicious email has been received it can be forwarded to

Suspicious text messages should be forwarded to the number 7726 which is free of charge.

If an individual believes they are a victim of a fraud, this should be reported to Action Fraud as soon as possible by calling 0300 123 2040 or visiting This can also be reported to Sussex Police online or by calling 101.


We are working with the local NHS and other services as they prepare to roll out the COVID-19 vaccination programme in Brighton and Hove.

This includes helping them to clearly communicate what is happening to local people and making them aware of any questions or issues that arise.

We know that there are lots of questions about both the vaccines and how they will be delivered. We have already shared your questions with those responsible for the roll-out of the vaccine.

Please tell us send us any questions that you may have and we will do our best to find the answers for you. This will help NHS staff to focus on delivering the vaccine and protecting local people.

Answers to most frequently asked questions will be shared on our website and social media. We will share these with the NHS, to help them deliver the vaccine and protect local people. For answers to Frequently Asked Questions please click here.


For information about the vaccination service in East and West Sussex please click these links:

Healthwatch East Sussex

Healthwatch West Sussex


Please visit the Sussex Health and Care Partnership website

For answers to Frequently Asked Questions please click here.

To help you understand more about  the vaccination roll out and what to expect, a series of videos have been produced which are available below:

Some further information is available via these links:

Click here to access translated materials

Plus: Gujarati, Punjabi, Sylheti, Tamil and Urdu. You can also find out more information about the vaccine rollout in the five South Asian languages here

Click here to access translated materials about the vaccine

For British Sign Language Resources

For Easy-read resources

Additional guides

For further information on COVID-19, including symptoms, testing, and data, please click here to visit our dedicated Healthwatch webpage.


The four vaccines (Pfizer BioNTech, Oxford/AstraZeneca, Moderna, Janssen)
Support and advice for ethinically diverse communities
Vaccine fact check, June 2021
Reasonable adjustments Easyread
Support travelling to have your vaccine

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