Why you should be vaccinated
Vaccinating people as quickly as possible will help drive infection rates down, particularly as a significantly more infectious and faster spreading strain has developed.
The coronavirus vaccine can reduce your risk of developing coronavirus and make your symptoms milder if you do get it.
The vaccine is not mandatory but NHS Scotland strongly recommends you get the vaccine when offered it.
Find out more about how you will be vaccinated
Who is currently being offered the coronavirus vaccine?
NHS Scotland are following the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) advice and are vaccinating those most at risk first, and those who work closest with them.
Those who have already been invited or are currently being invited to be vaccinated are:
- residents in a care home for older adults and their carers
- front line health and social care workers
- clinically extremely vulnerable individuals
- people aged 30 and over
- those aged 16 to 64 with underlying health conditions which put them at higher risk of serious disease and mortality
- all adults with a learning disability – mild, moderate, severe and profound
- unpaid carers
- household contacts of those who are severely immunosuppressed
- adults experiencing homelessness and rough sleeping
People aged 16 and 17 can receive the vaccine if they:
- are identified as clinically extremely vulnerable, or as having a specific underlying health condition
- are an unpaid carer
- are in health and social care JCVI Group 2, frontline health or social care worker
People aged 16 and 17 will normally be offered the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine.
If you are not registered with a GP or do not have Community Health Index (CHI) number you can still get the vaccine by phoning the helpline on 0800 030 8013.
Who will be offered the vaccine next?
People aged 18 to 49 will be invited to get their first dose of the coronavirus vaccine by the end of July, depending on vaccine supply.
Those aged 18 to 29 years old on (and including) 31 July 2021 will be invited forward next.
In the specific areas of Glasgow affected by the current outbreak, all 18 to 39 year olds are now being invited with older age groups first.
Underlying health conditions
Read more about the health conditions that put people aged 16 years and over at higher risk of serious disease and mortality.
Younger adults in long-stay nursing and residential care settings
Many younger adults in residential care settings will be eligible for the coronavirus vaccine because they fall into one of the clinical risk groups (for example learning disabilities).
Given the likely high risk of exposure in these settings, vaccination of the whole resident population is recommended.
Younger residents in care homes for the elderly will also be at a higher risk of exposure. Although they may be at lower risk of mortality than older residents, they should be offered the coronavirus vaccine.
Unpaid carers aged 16 to 64 are now being offered vaccination alongside adults with eligible at-risk health conditions (priority group 6).
Those unpaid carers aged 65 and over will have been offered the vaccine earlier in priority groups 2 to 5.
Unpaid carers being prioritised for vaccination are those who provide face-to-face care (without payment) for someone else due to a disability, ill-health, frailty or addiction issues.
Unpaid carers will be invited to get their coronavirus vaccine by phone or letter.
This information sheet from the Scottish Government has more information about additional support for unpaid carers.
If you are not registered with your GP as an unpaid carer, you can now register for a vaccine by phoning the COVID-19 Vaccination Helpline on 0800 030 8013.
Frontline social care workers
The JCVI definition of frontline social care workers is:
- those working in long-stay residential and nursing care homes or other long-stay care facilities where rapid spread is likely to follow introduction of infection and cause high levels of illness or death
- social care staff directly involved in the care of their patients or clients
- others involved directly in delivering social care such that they and vulnerable patients/ clients are at increased risk of exposure
Frontline social care workers working directly with local authority or NHS services will be contacted by their local health board for vaccination.
Social care workers in the private/independent or third sector
A letter has been issued to the third and independent sector which provides further advice for staff to self-assess their eligibility for vaccination.
It includes information for social care workers to arrange their vaccination appointment. Speak to your employer for more information.
Clinically extremely vulnerable
Clinically extremely vulnerable individuals are those who were recommended by the NHS to shield.
Everyone in this group will be eligible for a vaccination at the same time as those aged 70 and over. People with underlying health conditions who are not on the shielding list will be offered the vaccine shortly after that.
Highest risk groups who were recommended to shield
Who should not get the vaccination
You should not get the coronavirus vaccine if you've had a severe anaphylactic reaction to any of the ingredients in the vaccine or a previous dose of the vaccine.
Before you're vaccinated, tell the person giving you the vaccine if you've ever had a serious allergic reaction (anaphylaxis).
This will affect very few people, but you will be able to ask any questions at your appointment.
Further information about the vaccines and their ingredients
Pregnancy, breastfeeding and the vaccine
If you're pregnant or breastfeeding, read more about the coronavirus vaccine and pregnancy.