For detailed information about the different COVID-19 vaccines, visit the Department of health website.

You may have some mild side effects, which are normal signs that your body is building protection against COVID-19. Side effects can include a sore arm where you have been injected, fever and muscle aches.

Clinical evidence shows side effects are mild and short-term. The vaccines are currently being monitored to detect any long-term effects. In the short term, we know being vaccinated significantly reduces the risk of hospitalisation and death from COVID-19.

Serious reactions such as allergic reactions are extremely rare. They usually occur within 15 minutes of receiving a vaccine. After you receive your vaccine, you should wait this amount of time before you leave to ensure your safety in case a reaction occurs.

Some people will experience more significant flu-like symptoms from the vaccine compared to other common vaccinations, and may need time away from normal activities. For the Pfizer vaccine, these symptoms are more common after the second dose. For the AstraZeneca vaccine, these symptoms are more common after the first dose.1

The AstraZeneca vaccine is not recommended for people under 60 years old, due to the risk of thrombosis with thrombocytopenia syndrome (TTS). People aged 18 to 59 may choose to receive the AstraZeneca vaccine, however must discuss this with their GP. People under 60 who have had a first dose of AstraZeneca vaccine, are advised to still have the second dose as the potential risks of TTS are far lower than with the first dose.

You cannot get COVID-19 from the vaccines.


  1. British Liver Trust. (2021, April 9). Update for people with liver disease on the COVID-19 vaccine. Retrieved from British Liver Trust:

Updated 14 July 2021