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COVID-19 vaccine FAQs

This page is updated regularly. For more information about the COVID-19 vaccination visit

If you can't find the answer to your question below, please email  

Last updated:17/09/21

 When is the next walk-in clinic in Barnsley?

The walk-in clinics in Barnsley are offering the following vaccines with no appointment needed:

  • First dose of Pfizer for everyone aged 16+
  • Second dose of Pfizer or AstraZeneca for people at 8 weeks or more from first dose

Or, you can also check on the national booking system and check or book for other appointments in the future.

Priory Campus, Pontefract Road, Lundwood, Barnsley S71 5PN (Free parking available, bus stops nearby)

  • Thursday 16th September - 0900 - 18:30

  • Saturday 25th September - 09:00 - 17:00
  • Sunday 26th September - 09:00 - 16:00

The Goldthorpe Medical Centre, Goldthorpe Green, Goldthorpe, S63 9EH (Free parking available, bus stops nearby)

  • Saturday 18th September - 0900 - 14:30

  • Sunday 19th September - 0900 - 14:30

Barnsley College (1st vaccines for students and staff only)

  • Monday 20th September 0930 - 17:00 at Barnsley Sixth Form Building in the Enrichment Theatre 
  • Monday 27th September 0930 - 17:00 at The Old Mill Lane building in the atrium. 

Extra info for walk-in clinics

  • It's always a good idea to have something to eat and drink before coming down for your vaccine. The team are really friendly and they will answer any questions you might have. Please wear your face covering. 

How and when will I be invited for my second dose vaccination?

You need two doses of the vaccine to get the best protection from the virus. It will be the same type of vaccine. If you are aged between 16 and 17 years and 8 months, you will be currently offered 1 vaccine only.

Your 2nd vaccine is usually given at week 8-12. You can book your 2nd vaccine online at or by calling 119 or you can attend one of the walk-in clinics if you have passed the 8 weeks mark. You will not be able to book your appointment for anything earlier than 8 weeks after your 1st vaccine.

Please book the earliest available appointment you are able to travel to. Appointments are being added all the time so check back on the or keep your eye out for walk-in-in clinics on the NHS Barnsley CCG or Barnsley Council social media pages where no appointment is needed.

When will 12 to 15 year-olds be offered the vaccine? 

People aged 12 to 15 in England will be offered one dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine, following advice from the 4 UK Chief Medical Officers (CMOs), the Health and Social Care Secretary has announced Monday 13 September.

In line with the recommendation of the independent Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), the government sought the views of the 4 UK CMOs on the wider issues that are relevant to the health of children.

The government has accepted the advice of the 4 UK CMOs and the NHS is preparing to deliver a schools-based vaccination programme, which is the successful model used for vaccinations including for HPV and Diphtheria, Tetanus and Polio (DTP), supported by GPs and community pharmacies. Invitations for vaccination will begin next week.

Parental, guardian or carer consent will be sought by vaccination healthcare staff prior to vaccination in line with existing school vaccination programmes.

Healthy school-aged children aged 12 to 15 will receive their COVID-19 vaccination in their school with alternative provision for those who are home schooled, in secure services or specialist mental health settings.

The Barnsley GP Covid-19 vaccination team is now working closely with the school vaccination and immunisation team and schools. As soon as further information is available, we will publish it here and Barnsley schools will also have the details once dates/location/consent process has been approved. 

 Who will be offered the booster vaccine and when?

The booster programme will be rolled out to the same priority groups as previously. This means care home residents, health and social care workers, people aged over 50, those aged 16 to 49 years with underlying health conditions that put them at higher risk of severe COVID-19, adult carers, and adult household contacts of immunosuppressed individuals will be prioritised.

Those groups will be eligible to receive their third vaccine, or often called a booster, from 6 months onwards after their second doses. This approach will allow more vulnerable people to be given their boosters quicker. 

The Barnsley GP vaccination service is now reviewing all the guidance and will shortly be announcing which groups will be contacted, when, and how. As soon as we have that information we will publish it on this website and in all the usual places. In the meant time please do not contact your GP practice to ask about the booster vaccine. Thank you for your help in this.

I’m in a priority group, when will I get the vaccine? 

You can book an appointment for your first dose online for an appointment. If your GP practice has your correct mobile telephone number, you may also receive an invite by text to an appointment here in Barnsley. Please help us by responding to your text invite, even it's to tell us you are already booked elsewhere. 

You can book online or call 119 to book and manage your appointment if: 

  • you are aged 17 and 9 months or over
  • you are at high risk from coronavirus (clinically extremely vulnerable)
  • you have a condition that puts you at higher risk (clinically vulnerable group 6, see details below)
  • you have a learning disability
  • you get a Carer's Allowance, get support following an assessment by your local authority or your GP record shows you are a carer
  • If you think you are an eligible unpaid carer who has not been contacted for your coronavirus vaccination, speak to your GP surgery.

Group 6

People aged 16 or over in priority group 6 are eligible for the vaccine. See below for the conditions.

Clinical conditions list:

  • a 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 (who may require long term immunosuppressive treatments)
  • 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, example sickle cell disease, or you have had your spleen removed
  • are seriously overweight (BMI of 40 and above)
  • are severely mentally ill
  • carers -  the vaccine will also be offered to adult carers – those who are in receipt of a carer’s allowance, or those unpaid carers who are the main carer of an elderly or disabled person whose welfare may be at risk if the carer falls ill.

Further detailed information on priority groups is available in the COVID-19 Green Book, chapter 14a.See the full list of priority groups

Is my GP giving COVID-19 vaccines?

Your GP practice is working with other GP practices across Barnsley to ensure that everyone in the priority groups is offered a vaccine. You will be can now book an appointment at one of the GP vaccination centres across Barnsley, rather than going to your GP practice.

I am in one of the eligible groups and I haven't been invited to have a vaccine by anyone?

Anyone aged 17 and 9 months or older and over can now book your appointment online or by calling 119. If you are 16 to 17and 8 months, or you do not have a GP or an NHS number you can get your vaccine at a local walk-in clinic.

When will care home residents get their vaccine?

GP practices have now visited every care home for older adults to offer residents and staff the vaccine. They will continue to monitor this to offer the vaccine to any residents who were unable to have it in the first visit, or who are a new resident who hasn't already been vaccinated. If you think this is the case please talk to the care home team in the first instance.

From 11 November 2021 all care home workers, and anyone entering a care home, will need to be fully vaccinated unless they're exempt under the regulations. 

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What happens when I go for my COVID-19 vaccine appointment?

There will be a team on hand to make your appointment visit run as smoothly as possible. There are a few things you can do to help us:

  • Please try to arrive as close to your appointment time as possible. If you do arrive early, please stay safe in your car until it is time for your appointment to help maintain social distancing measures. It is also cold at this time of year, so please wrap up warm.
  • Please wear your face coverings as you will be entering a medical building.
  • If you need help with mobility please alert one of the staff and we will help support you and navigate you through the clinic. 

When you arrive, volunteer marshals will show you where to go and you will be asked to sign in at a reception area.

Once you have had your vaccination, you may be required to wait for 15 minutes to ensure there are no adverse side effects. You must then leave the premises as soon as you are invited to do so.

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How many people have been vaccinated so far?

Figures for the total numbers of people who have been vaccinated in the UK and across our region are updated regularly and are available on the NHS England website.

 How do I get confirmation of my vaccination status?

Demonstrating your COVID-19 vaccination status allows you to show others that you’ve had a full course of the COVID-19 vaccine when travelling abroad to some countries or territories. A full course is currently 2 doses of any approved vaccine.

COVID-19 vaccination status is available to people who live in England. You can get your vaccination status in digital or paper format.

You can now access your COVID-19 vaccination status through the free NHS App. You can access the app through mobile devices such as a smartphone or by tablet. Proof of your COVID-19 vaccination status will be shown within the NHS App. We recommend that you register with the app before booking international travel.

If you do not have access to a smartphone and know that the country you are travelling to requires COVID-19 vaccination status, you can call the NHS helpline on 119 and ask for a letter to be posted to you. This must be at least 5 days after you’ve completed your course of the vaccine. We expect the letter to take up to 5 days to reach you.

! Do not contact your GP surgery about your COVID-19 vaccination status. GPs cannot provide letters showing your COVID-19 vaccination status.

For the full details on vaccination status click here. 

I’m a health or care provider, when will I be able to get a vaccine?

Front line health and care workers who meet the criteria as set out within the COVID-19: Green Book are part of the priority groups. All current health and care services have been invited for their 1st and 2nd dose of the vaccine. If you haven't had either vaccine yet, you can easily get yours now by attending a walk-in clinic in Barnsley (see details above). If you have any questions, have a chat with your employer in the first instance.

From 11 November 2021 all care home workers, and anyone entering a care home, will need to be fully vaccinated unless they're exempt under the regulations. 

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Is the NHS confident the vaccine is safe?  

Yes. The NHS will not offer any Covid-19 vaccinations to the public until experts have signed off that it is safe to do so.  The MHRA, the official UK regulator, have said this vaccine is very safe and highly effective, and we have full confidence in their expert judgement and processes.  

The COVID-19 vaccines are highly effective and have been shown to substantially reduce the risk of death, severe disease and transmission of infection.

The JCVI has updated their guidance on 7/5/21. Adverse events following the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine are extremely rare and, for the vast majority of people, the benefits of preventing serious illness and death far outweigh any risks. The JCVI has advised a preference for adults under 40 without underlying health conditions to receive an alternative to the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine – where available and only if this does not cause substantial delays in being vaccinated. 

Up to 28 April 2021, the MHRA had received 242 reports of blood clotting cases in people who also had low levels of platelets in the UK, following the use of Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine. These numbers are very small compared to the millions of people who have received the vaccine. The overall incidence of case reports of thromboembolic events with low platelets after first or unknown doses was 10.5 for every million million doses.

The majority of these extremely rare events occurred after the first dose.

Everybody who has already had a first dose of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine should receive a second dose of the same jab, irrespective of age, except for the very small number of people who experienced blood clots with low platelet counts from their first vaccination.

Getting the second vaccine dose is very important because it further increases the level of protection against COVID-19.

As a precautionary measure, anyone who has the following symptoms from around 4 days to 4 weeks after vaccination is advised to seek prompt medical advice:

  • a severe headache that is not relieved with painkillers or is getting worse
  • a headache that feels worse when you lie down or bend over
  • a headache that is unusual for you and occurs with blurred vision, feeling or being sick, problems speaking, weakness, drowsiness or seizures
  • a rash that looks like small bruises or bleeding under the skin
  • shortness of breath, chest pain, leg swelling or persistent abdominal pain

How effective is the COVID-19 vaccine?

The 1st dose of the COVID-19 vaccine should give you good protection from coronavirus from 3 or 4 weeks after you've had it.

But you need to have the 2 doses of the vaccine to give you longer lasting protection.

There is a chance you might still get or spread coronavirus even if you have the vaccine.

This means it is important to:

  • continue to follow social distancing guidance
  • if you can, wear something that covers your nose and mouth in places where it's hard to stay away from other people

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 Should people who have already had COVID-19 get vaccinated?

Yes, they should get vaccinated. We know that your body will produce a better and stronger antibody response if you have the vaccine than if you get the infection naturally. There is no evidence of any safety concerns from vaccinating individuals with a past history of COVID-19 infection, or with detectable COVID-19 antibody, so people who have had COVID-19 disease (whether confirmed or suspected) can still receive the COVID-19 vaccine when it is their time to do so.  

People currently unwell and experiencing COVID-19 symptoms should not receive the COVID-19 vaccine until at least four weeks after they have recovered.

What this advice on why you should still get your vaccine if you have had COVID-19.

Why is it important to get your COVID-19 vaccination?

Getting your COVID-19 vaccination as soon as you can, should protect you and may help to protect your family and those you care for. 

The COVID-19 vaccine should help reduce the rates of serious illness and save lives and will therefore reduce pressure on the NHS and social care services. 

Is the vaccine vegan/vegetarian friendly?

Yes, the vaccines do not contain any meat derivatives or porcine products. If, and when, further vaccines are approved we will publish information about known allergens or ingredients that are important for certain faiths, cultures and beliefs. 

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What is the current advice if you're of childbearing age, pregnant or breastfeeding? 

TheCOVID vaccination is the best protection against the know risks ofCOVID-19 for both you and your baby. If you're pregnant and have not had a COVID-19 vaccine yet, it's preferable for you to have the Pfizer/BioNTech or Moderna vaccine.

Watch the video below for more information about getting a vaccine in Barnsley during pregnancy or speak to your GP or maternity team for more infomation.

Read more about the vaccine during pregnancy or breastfeeding here.

Who cannot have the vaccine?

People who are suffering from a fever-type illness should postpone having the vaccine until they have recovered. 

People currently unwell and experiencing COVID-19 symptoms should not receive the COVID-19 vaccine until at least four weeks after they have recovered. 

Are there any known or anticipated side effects?

Like all medicines, vaccines can cause side effects. Most of these are mild and short-term, and not everyone gets them. Even if you do have symptoms after the first dose, you still need to have the second dose. You may not be protected until at least seven days after your second dose of the vaccine. 

Very common side effects include:

  • Having a painful, heavy feeling and tenderness in the arm where you had your injection. This tends to be worst around 1-2 days after the vaccine
  • Feeling tired
  • Headache
  • General aches, or mild flu like symptoms

As with all vaccines, appropriate treatment and care will be available in case of a rare anaphylactic event following administration. 

I have had my flu vaccine, do I need the COVID-19 vaccine as well?

The flu vaccine does not protect you from COVID-19. As you are eligible for both vaccines you should have them both, but normally separated by at least a week. 

Will the COVID-19 vaccine protect me from flu? 

No, the COVID-19 vaccine will not protect you against the flu. If you have been offered a flu vaccine, please try to have this as soon as possible to help protect you, your family and patients from flu this winter. 

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Can I volunteer to help out at the vaccination sites?

Barnsley CVS is working with the CCG and our partners as part of the delivery of the local vaccination programme. They have an important role in providing marshalling volunteers to help with the smooth running of the programme.

We've been truly humbled by the fantastic response from members of our local communities coming forward in large numbers to volunteer at the vaccination sites. On behalf of the vaccination programme, thank you to everyone who has volunteered their time, energy and enthusiasm so far and continues to do so. 

Due to receiving such a great response, the recruitment for volunteer marshals for the vaccination sites is currently on hold.  However, if you are interested in finding out about other volunteering opportunities across the borough please contact Barnsley CVS via email at and they will be able to provide you with further details.

I'm a registered clinician or recently retired and interested in being involved as a vaccinator at one of the vaccination sites, who do I contact? 

If you are a registered clinician or recently retired and interested in being involved as a vaccinator to support the delivery of the local vaccination programme, please email us at  with your details for follow up under the subject heading vaccinators. 

We are a local business, is there a way that we can offer our premises for support with the vaccination programme?

We have received a number of offers of support from local and national businesses in relation to the use of their premises for the delivery of our Barnsley Vaccination Programme.  Whilst we are extremely grateful for these kind offers of support, currently three designated sites have been agreed within the borough that already have the requisite infrastructure in place and at the moment the NHS locally are not being asked to identify more. 

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