Skip to main contentSkip to main content

Booster dose of the coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine

NHS information about the coronavirus (COVID-19) booster dose, including who can get a booster and how to get one.

A booster dose of the coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine helps improve the protection you have from your first 2 doses of the vaccine.

It helps give you longer-term protection against getting seriously ill from COVID-19.

Everyone aged 16 and over who had a 2nd dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at least 3 months ago can get a booster dose.

Some children aged 12 to 15 are eligible for a booster dose if either:

  • they live with someone who has a weakened immune system (such as someone who has HIV, has had a transplant or is having certain treatments for cancer, lupus or rheumatoid arthritis)
  • they have a condition that means they're at high risk of getting seriously ill from COVID-19

Conditions that mean they may be at high risk are:

  • a severe problem with the brain or nerves, such as cerebral palsy
  • Down's syndrome
  • severe or multiple learning disabilities (or they're on the learning disability register)
  • a condition that means they're more likely to get infections (such as some genetic conditions or types of cancer)
Information:

If you had a 3rd dose of the COVID-19 vaccine because you have or had a weakened immune system, you can get a booster dose from 3 months after your 3rd dose.

If you're eligible, you can get a booster dose at least 3 months after you had your 2nd dose.

If you're aged 16 or over you can:

  • book a vaccination appointment online for an appointment at a vaccination centre or pharmacy
  • go to a walk-in vaccination site to get vaccinated without needing an appointment
  • wait to be contacted by a local NHS service such as a GP surgery and book an appointment with them

Eligible children aged 12 to 15 can go to a walk-in vaccination site or wait to be contacted by a local NHS service.

Information:

If you had a 3rd dose of the COVID-19 vaccine because you have or had a weakened immune system, your GP or hospital specialist will invite you for your booster dose when it's due.

If you have a letter from your GP or hospital specialist inviting you for your 3rd dose, you can get your booster at a walk-in COVID-19 vaccination site. You'll need to bring your letter with you.

You can pre-book your booster dose online if you're aged 16 or over and it's been 2 months (61 days) since you had your 2nd dose.

You'll be offered appointment dates from 3 months after the date of your 2nd dose.

You can get your booster dose at a walk-in COVID-19 vaccination site if you had your 2nd dose at least 3 months ago and you are:

  • aged 16 or over
  • aged 12 to 15 and you have a condition that means you're at high risk of getting seriously ill from COVID-19 – you’ll need to bring your letter, text or email inviting you to get your booster dose or a letter from your GP or hospital specialist about your condition
  • aged 12 to 15 and you live with someone who has a weakened immune system – you’ll need to bring your letter, text or email inviting you to get your booster dose, or a letter from the GP or hospital specialist of the person you live with confirming that anyone they live with should get a booster dose

Not all walk-in sites are currently offering booster doses for children aged 12 to 15. More sites will become available over time.

Most people will be offered a booster dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine or Moderna vaccine.

This means your booster dose may be different from the vaccines you had for your 1st and 2nd doses.

Some people may be offered a booster dose of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine if they cannot have the Pfizer/BioNTech or Moderna vaccine.

Some people who can get a booster dose of the COVID-19 vaccine are also eligible for the annual flu vaccine.

If you are offered both vaccines, it's safe to have them at the same time.

Find out more about the flu vaccine

Find out more about the COVID-19 booster dose on GOV.UK

Open all pages about Coronavirus (COVID-19)