Can I choose which vaccine I get? Can the vaccines be mixed? - Most commonly asked questions about the vaccines answered

As the Nightingale Hospital in Sunderland opens as a mass vaccination centre we look at the most commonly asked questions about vaccine types.

By Georgina Cutler
Tuesday, 26th January 2021, 3:44 pm
Updated Wednesday, 27th January 2021, 7:31 am
A member of staff prepares a dose of the Oxford/Astrazeneca coronavirus vaccine at a coronavirus vaccination clinic at the NHS Nightingale Hospital North East in Sunderland. Picture date: Tuesday January 26, 2021. PA Photo. See PA story HEALTH Coronavirus. Photo credit should read: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire
A member of staff prepares a dose of the Oxford/Astrazeneca coronavirus vaccine at a coronavirus vaccination clinic at the NHS Nightingale Hospital North East in Sunderland. Picture date: Tuesday January 26, 2021. PA Photo. See PA story HEALTH Coronavirus. Photo credit should read: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire

The biggest vaccination programme in NHS history is being delivered at pace with more than 6.3 million people in the UK receiving their first dose of the covid-19 vaccine.

More centres, including the Nightingale in Sunderland have opened this week, which means there will soon be a network of 50 centres, more than 1,000 GP services and over 250 hospital sites offering vaccinations across the country.

However after concerns about patients turning down the Pfizer vaccine in favour of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine, the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) has ruled both jabs are safe and effective in offering protection against the virus.

So can people actually choose which one they receive?

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Can I choose which vaccine I get?

People are not able to choose which jab they want to receive.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) has ruled both jabs are safe and effective in offering protection against the virus.

The vaccine people are offered will be based on clinical judgement supported by the advise of the JCVI (Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation).

Which vaccine will I receive?

Both UK approved vaccines are over 90 percent effective so either one will deliver immunity to the disease.

Experts have not specified that any one group should get a particular vaccine.

Can the vaccines be mixed?

Official guidance says everyone should receive the same vaccine.

But in very rare circumstances yes, they can be mixed “if the individual is likely to be at immediate high risk or is considered unlikely to attend again.”

According to Public Health England people who have received their first vaccine dose “and who attend for vaccination at a site where the same vaccine is not available, or if the first product received is unknown, it is reasonable to offer one dose of the locally available product to complete the schedule.”

Can I pay to be vaccinated sooner?

No - the vaccine is being rolled out free of charge by the NHS. It’s not possible to jump the queue by paying says Public Health England.

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