COVID-19 and Flu Vaccines

Information about the COVID-19 and flu vaccinations in Hampshire

COVID-19 and flu can be serious illnesses, especially for those who are older, vulnerable or have certain health conditions. Vaccines are a safe and effective way to protect against the worst effects of viruses.

Who’s eligible for a free flu and COVID-19 vaccine during Autumn and Winter 2023/24

Seasonal COVID-19 vaccines are offered to those at increased risk of getting seriously ill from COVID-19 – this may be due to a health condition or age.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation has recommended the following groups should be able to get a COVID-19 vaccine this autumn/winter:

  • residents and staff in a care home for older adults
  • people that are pregnant
  • all adults aged 65 years and over
  • frontline health and social care workers
  • persons aged 6 months to 64 years in a clinical risk group, as defined in tables 3 and 4 of the COVID-19 chapter of the Green book
  • persons aged 12 to 64 years who are household contacts, as defined in the Green book, of people with immunosuppression
  • persons aged 16 to 64 years who are carers, as defined in the Green book

The below groups will be eligible for a flu vaccine free from the NHS from 1 September 2023:

  • those aged 65 years and over
  • those aged 6 months to under 65 years in clinical risk groups
  • pregnant women
  • all children aged 2 or 3 years on 31 August 2023
  • primary school aged children (from Reception to Year 6)
  • secondary school-aged children in Years 7, 8, 9, 10 and 11 (including home-schooled and other children not in mainstream education)
  • those in long-stay residential care homes
  • carers in receipt of carer’s allowance, or those who are the main carer of an elderly or disabled person
  • close contacts of immunocompromised individuals
  • frontline workers in a social care setting without an employer led occupational health scheme including those working for a registered residential care or nursing home, registered domiciliary care providers, voluntary managed hospice providers and those that are employed by those who receive direct payments (personal budgets) or Personal Health budgets, such as Personal Assistants

Getting a vaccine

You may be invited to get your winter vaccines by the NHS or your GP practice through a letter, text or email. If you are eligible, you do not have to wait for this before booking an appointment.

Anyone eligible can book their COVID-19 vaccination via the NHS website, by downloading the NHS App, or by calling 119 for free if they can’t get online. If you have any questions about the COVID-19 vaccination, you can also contact the Hampshire and Isle of Wight COVID-19 Vaccination Helpline on 0300 561 0018. It is open 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday and Saturday and Sunday 9am to 1pm.

GP practices and other local NHS services will also be contacting people to offer both flu and COVID-19 vaccines, and people can also book the flu vaccine by searching online for a local pharmacy: Book or manage a free NHS flu vaccination at a pharmacy.

Some maternity services can offer vaccination if you're pregnant, and vaccines might also be offered if you’re in hospital as an inpatient or at a hospital appointment.

Find out more about getting a flu and COVID-19 vaccine: Get Winter Strong - Hampshire and Isle of Wight ICS