For many of those who were vaccinated at the start of the programme, the time will come over the next few weeks to return for their second dose.
The NHS has been planning meticulously to ensure that people can get that second dose when it is the right time for them to do so, and all vaccination services have now received supply allocations for the first three weeks for second doses to allow them to plan clinics.
The same vaccine should be used for both doses, and those who received the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine in December can be assured that there is enough supply going to the right places to ensure that they can get their second dose.
The first dose of both the Pfizer/BioNTech and Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine offer good levels of protection, but to get maximum protection from COVID-19, everyone will need to get a second dose.
We are therefore urging people to come forward for their second dose of the vaccine when they are contacted or if they have an appointment booked.
Vaccination experts recommended that people receive their second dose around 12 weeks after their first.
The process of providing second doses is progressing according to when people received the first dose, which means the top priority groups that received their first dose of the vaccine at the start of the programme will be the first to receive their second dose. Over the coming weeks this will therefore be mainly people aged 80 and over, and care home residents and staff.
People who received their first dose in a hospital hub or through a GP service will be contacted to receive their second dose, if they haven’t already. You do not need to contact the NHS.
People who booked their appointments through the national booking service (online at www.nhs.uk/covidvaccine or by ringing 119) will have booked both their first and second appointments at the same time. If they do not have a second appointment but were vaccinated at one of our large vaccination centres, they can book their second appointment via the national booking system.
People who rang 119 will have been given details of their second appointment over the phone.
People who booked online can remind themselves of their the place and time of their second dose using the ‘manage my appointments’ section on www.nhs.uk/covidvaccine.
For more information on the vaccine programme in West Lancashire, please see the dedicated COVID-19 page on the Healthier Lancashire and South Cumbria website.