There have been more than 825,000 COVID-19 vaccinations in south east London.
In Royal Greenwich, the COVID-19 vaccine is available through:
- 3 Primary Care Network (PCN) sites
- Charlton Vaccination site
- 2 Pharmacy sites (with more coming soon)
- 1 Hospital mass vaccination site
- Roving models (Covering care homes and other residential settings where people are housebound) and pop-up clinics (see The Royal Greenwich vaccination bus providing easier access to COVID-19 jabs )
The NHS in south east London is working hard to vaccinate those most at-risk from COVID-19.
All those in eligible groups (see below) can book online without a letter. We have updated our website and social media accordingly – see below for the latest messaging:
The NHS is currently offering the COVID-19 vaccines to people most at risk from coronavirus.
It’s being given to:
- people aged 45 and over
- those who are categorised as clinically extremely vulnerable (high risk) or clinically vulnerable (moderate risk - This now includes all people on the GP Learning Disability Register) – see definitions here
- carers (if you receive a Carers Allowance you can book online, unpaid carers can get the vaccine through their GP or by registering with the Greenwich Carers Centre)
- people who live or work in care homes
- frontline health and social care workers (social care workers can book their vaccine through their employer or GP
To be invited for a vaccination you will need to be registered with a GP surgery in England. You can register with a GP if you do not have one.
NOTE: The online booking system offers appointments at a larger vaccination centre or a pharmacy that provides COVID-19 vaccinations. If you are housebound you will be contacted by your GP to be vaccinated at home. If you are not housebound, you can wait to be contacted by your GP or until more locations closer to where you live become available.
If you are housebound you will be contacted by your GP to be vaccinated at home.
If you are not housebound, you can wait to be contacted by your GP or until more locations closer to where you live become available.
See the full list of priority groups here and guidance on frontline health or social care workers and the high or moderate risk categories here.
(Updated on 13/04/2021)
COVID-19 vaccine video playlist
Hear from local faith and community leaders, trusted clinicians and other members of your community explain why it’s so important to get the COVID-19 vaccine.
Who can get the COVID-19 vaccine?
The NHS is currently offering the COVID-19 vaccine to people most at risk from coronavirus. Check the "Latest update" at the top of this article for eligibility criteria for getting the vaccine in Royal Greenwich.
The vaccine is being offered in some hospitals and hundreds of local vaccination centres run by GPs. To be invited for a vaccination you will need to be registered with a GP surgery in England. You can register with a GP if you do not have one.
The vaccine will be offered more widely, and at other locations, as soon as possible.
The order in which people will be offered the vaccine is based on advice from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI). Read the latest JCVI advice on priority groups for the COVID-19 vaccination on GOV.UK
Why can’t everyone have their COVID-19 vaccine now?
The order in which people will be offered a vaccine is based on advice from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) – see an explainer video here, or a visual graphic of the Priority Groups here.
Some south east London GPs are reporting that patients have already been asking for the COVID-19 vaccine and are then confused and disappointed when turned away.
We’re keen to highlight one particular leaflet which explains the current eligibility and availability criteria – see here.
We are asking the public not to contact the NHS to get an appointment until they get their letter.
Advice if you’re of childbearing age, pregnant or breastfeeding
There’s no evidence the COVID-19 vaccine is unsafe if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding, but more evidence is needed before you can be routinely offered the vaccine.
The vaccine should only be considered for use in pregnancy when the potential benefits outweigh any potential risks for the mother and baby.
Women should discuss the benefits and risks of having the vaccine with your healthcare professional and reach a joint decision based on individual circumstances. Women who are breastfeeding can also be given the vaccine.
The Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG) and the Royal College Midwives (RCM) issued a joint statement to provide reassurance around the misinformation that has been shared about the impact of Covid-19 vaccines on fertility. You can read the full statement here.
How is the COVID-19 vaccine given?
The COVID-19 vaccine is given as an injection into your upper arm. It is given as two doses with the second dose of the vaccine given up to 12 weeks after the first dose.
How safe is the COVID-19 vaccine?
The vaccines have been developed by Pfizer/BioNTech, Oxford-AstraZeneca and Moderna. All of these have approved for use in the UK and have met the strict current standards of safety, quality and effectiveness set out by the independent Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).
Any coronavirus vaccine that is approved must go through all the clinical trials and safety checks all other licensed medicines go through. The UK has some of the highest safety standards in the world.
Other vaccines are being developed but they will only be available on the NHS once they have been thoroughly tested to make sure they are safe and effective.
So far, millions of people around the world have been given a COVID-19 vaccine and reports of serious side effects, such as allergic reactions, have been very rare. No long-term complications have been reported.
Read about the approved Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine for COVID-19 by MHRA on GOV.UK
Read about the approved Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine for COVID-19 by MHRA on GOV.UK
Read about the approved Moderna vaccine for COVID-19 by MHRA on GOV.UK
Is it safe to have the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine when some countries paused its roll out?
It has not been confirmed that the reports of blood clots were caused by the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine. More than 11 million doses of the COVID-19 Vaccine AstraZeneca have now been given across the UK, and the number of blood clots reported after having the vaccine is not greater than the number that would have occurred naturally in the vaccinated population. People should still go and get their COVID-19 vaccine when asked to do so.
The risks of catching COVID-19 are much more serious than the risks associated with having the vaccine. If you want to speak to someone about your concerns, you can contact your GP.
How effective is the COVID-19 vaccine?
The MHRA have said these vaccines are highly effective, but to get the best protection people need to come back for the second dose – this is really important.
After one dose, the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine has been estimated to offer 89% effectiveness from two weeks after it is given. The Oxford/AstraZeneca has been estimated to offer 74% effectiveness from two weeks after it is given. Clinical trials showed the Moderna vaccine was 94% effective after two doses.
To ensure as many people are vaccinated as quickly as possible with the first dose, and get at least a good level of immunity, the Department for Health and Social Care now advise that the second dose of the vaccines should be scheduled up to 12 weeks after the first.
Full protection kicks in around a week or two after the second dose, which is why it’s also important that when you do get invited, you act on that and get yourself booked in as soon as possible.
Like any other vaccine, there is a small chance you might still get coronavirus even if you have had a vaccine.
Therefore, it is still important to:
- continue to follow social distancing guidance
- wear something that covers your nose and mouth in places where it’s hard to stay away from other people
Read more about why vaccines are safe and important, including how they work and what they contain.
COVID-19 vaccine side effects
Most side effects are mild and should not last longer than a week, such as:
- a sore arm where the needle went in
- feeling tired
- a headache
- feeling achy
You can take painkillers, such as paracetamol, if you need to.
If you have a high temperature you may have coronavirus or another infection.
If your symptoms get worse or you are worried, call NHS 111.
It is very rare for anyone to have a serious reaction to the vaccine (anaphylaxis). If this does happen, it usually happens within minutes of receiving the vaccine where trained clinical professionals are on hand to attend to you immediately.
Anyone with a previous history of extreme allergic reactions will be issued the vaccine in a high controlled environment such as a hospital site. If you have a history of anaphylaxis reactions to vaccines or medicine please discuss this with your GP when they contact you for your vaccine appointment and they may refer you to a more appropriate site.
More information on possible side effects can be found at www.nhs.uk/covidvaccine
COVID-19 vaccine ingredients
Both the two currently rolled out COVID-19 vaccines do not contain foetal, animal products, mercury or egg, and are therefore suitable for vegetarians and vegans. All ingredients are published in healthcare information on the MHRA’s website.
The British Islamic Medical Association have produced a helpful guide for the Muslim community which can be found at www.britishima.org/pfizer-biontech-covid19-vaccine
For more information
Visit the South East London Clinical Commissioning Group website for the latest information about the COVID-19 vaccine roll-out, or check the downloads in this article.
If you need this information in a different language or format get in touch:
020 8301 8340