Frontline social care workers
If you are a frontline social care worker or employer and you have not been offered the Covid-19 vaccine, we will send you details of how to apply. Please send us a brief description of your role and employer.
NHS Covid-19 Vaccination Programme
The Covid-19 vaccine is safe and effective. It gives people the best protection against Covid-19.
Who can currently get the Covid-19 vaccine?
There are two ways those eligible for Covid-19 vaccination can book their appointment.
The following groups can be booked appointments locally and through the council's vaccine helpline (020 7364 3030):
- People aged 65 and over
- The clinically extremely vulnerable aged 16 and over
- Clinically at-risk 50 to 64 year olds
- Adult care home residents
- Health and social care workers
- Anyone who is a main carer for someone at high risk from Covid-19
People can also book their vaccine appointment through the national NHS website and currently the following groups are eligible to book through the national system:
- Anyone aged 45 and over
- Clinically extremely vulnerable
- Eligible frontline health or social care worker
- Clinically at-risk (aged 18 – 65)
- Anyone with a learning disability
- Anyone who is a main carer for someone at high risk from Covid-19
Appointments through the national NHS include those being given at mass vaccination centres.
Council vaccine helpline
Tower Hamlets residents who are eligible for the Covid-19 vaccine are being supported to book their appointment through the council's vaccine helpline - 020 7364 3030.
The helpline is staffed with call handlers who can speak eight community languages.
The team both proactively call residents who have been contacted about being vaccinated but not yet booked their appointment and answer incoming calls from eligible residents who want to book their appointment or ask questions.
If you are eligible and have not yet had your vaccine, you can book your appointment through the helpline or call for advice.
More information on the vaccine helpline, along with a set of frequently asked questions, can be found on the GP Care Group website.
AstraZeneca vaccine safety
We are aware of recent reports (and media coverage) suggesting a link between the Covid-19 AstraZeneca vaccine and blood clots.
In the UK the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) continues to recommend the use of the AstraZeneca vaccine.
In Tower Hamlets, the AstraZeneca vaccine continues to be used. The vaccine is safe and effective and there is no evidence to suggest a link between the vaccine and blood clots.
We will continue to monitor this situation and respond to any changes in recommendations on the use of the vaccine.
The latest statement from the MHRA is available online.
Information about the vaccine covering safety is also available on the East London Health & Care Partnership website.
The World Health Organization have also published information on Covid-19 vaccine safety.
If you are aged 70 or over or clinically extremely vulnerable
Now, anyone who is aged 70 or over or clinically extremely vulnerable, should book their vaccine appointment. Residents can speak to their GP or call the council's vaccine helpline - 020 7364 3030. These options will mean eligible residents are booked an appointment at one of the local vaccine sites in the borough.
Appointments can also be booked at one of the mass vaccination centres through the national NHS website.
Unpaid carers and the Covid-19 vaccine
Unpaid carers over the age of 18 who are not already known to health and care services can arrange their Covid-19 vaccine through the national booking system, or by calling 119. You will be asked to complete a short application process to determine eligibility.
You must be over 18 to book using the national booking service and you will need to provide your name, date of birth and your NHS number. When you go and get your vaccine, take along with you the confirmation of your appointment, photo ID to prove your identity, and your NHS number if you have it. You do not need to provide proof you are an unpaid carer. If you do not have a photo ID, that’s okay as you won’t be turned away, but you may be asked to confirm your identity such as your name, date of birth, and address.
If you are not eligible, wait to be contacted
The NHS continues to remind people that when it is their turn to be vaccinated, they will be informed. Anyone who is not in the eligible groups (listed above) should not contact their doctor or the NHS asking about vaccination; this is not a service that you are able to book in advance.
Although many people will not yet be in eligible groups, please make sure your GP has your most up to date contact details, including mobile phone number, so that when it is your turn, you can be easily contacted by phone or text and informed.
Public health advice continues to be important
In the meantime, it is vitally important that we all continue to follow the national public health guidance: wash your hands regularly, wear a face covering in enclosed spaces and maintain safe social distancing. Rates of Covid-19 are high, it is still very much among us and infectious. The risk of catching it is the same as ever for people who have not been vaccinated.
There is more information about the Covid-19 vaccine on both the Government and the NHS website, so please take time to click on these links and read through these pages if you want to find out more.
There is also a Covid-19 vaccination guide for older adults leaflet available.
We will keep you updated as plans for the vaccine programme progress in Tower Hamlets.
Please remember the following information:
- Do not attend or walk in to a vaccine centre without an appointment or being invited.
- When eligible you will be invited for vaccination by the NHS/local GP (letter, phone follow up, text message reminder to book appointment).
- Based on advice from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation, the government are prioritising first doses of the Covid-19 vaccines. Please do not contact the NHS asking about second doses – updates will be given when these are being administered.
- Do not take anyone else with you to your vaccine appointment unless absolutely necessary.
- Please be on time for your appointment - not too early or too late.
There are reports of people being contacted by fraudsters offering the Covid-19 vaccine. The reports show text messages being sent providing a link for people to register their details to apply for the vaccine, some of which require payment.
These text messages and links are not sent from, or linked to, the NHS.
Please note the NHS will:
- Never ask you to press a button on your keypad or send a text asking you to confirm you want the vaccine.
- Never ask for payment for the vaccine or for your bank details.
If you receive a text message from an unfamiliar number:
- Do not respond to it or click on any links.
- Do not enter any personal or log on details.
- Do not make any payment.