CORONAVIRUS VACCINE

Coronavirus vaccine for people living with asthma across the UK

We know people living with asthma have a lot of questions about the coronavirus vaccine. Here are some answers to the most common questions we have been asked.

News and information about the vaccine is changing frequently. We will keep this page updated with new information when we have it.

We know there has been a lot of information in the media about different coronavirus vaccines. We understand that people living with asthma, their families and carers will have a lot of questions. This page has answers to the most frequently asked questions.

Coronavirus is having a huge impact on people living with asthma. Asthma and Allergy Foundation team are doing the best they can to support people during this time. If you would like to talk, you can call our advice and support Line on 01224 973 001, email info@asthmaandallergy.org.uk or contact us using any of our social media platforms.

Vaccine FAQs

On Wednesday 2nd December, it was announced that the coronavirus vaccine developed by Pfizer/BioNTech has been approved in the UK.

On Wednesday 30th December, it was announced that the Oxford University/AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine has also been approved in the UK.

These vaccines are now available and are being given to clinically vulnerable groups over the next few months.

On Friday 8th January, it was announced that the Moderna coronavirus vaccine has been approved in the UK. On the 18th of March 2021, it was announced that Moderna promises first shipment of new vaccine to UK in April.

Other vaccines are still being developed in clinical trials and should be available once they have been approved.

We understand that people living with asthma are eager to know when they might be given the coronavirus vaccine.

The decision about who gets the vaccine and when will follow advice from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI). The government current guideline is that only people living with severe asthma who have had a hospital stay within the past 12 months and are on very high dose of steroids tablets are eligible for priority vaccine.

As an organisation working directly with thousands of people with asthma, we know the word ‘severe’ is relative as people with asthma often moves along a continuum: mild, moderate, and severe. A mild asthmatic can easily become severe when they come in contact with a trigger or daily preventer inhaler not working as it should. Asthma and Allergy Foundation is calling on the government to prioritise all asthmatics for the COVID-19 vaccine scheme, we strongly believe not doing so will put many lives at risk.

Here are a few news articles:

https://www.eveningexpress.co.uk/fp/news/local/aberdeen-asthma-charity-calls-for-people-with-condition-to-be-prioritised-for-covid-vaccine/

https://www.agcc.co.uk/news-article/asthma-sufferers-left-at-risk-due-to-priority-vaccine-omission?fbclid=IwAR3TYwVpyR1XUThzLSi-55C2iJc883hsS5xwd4CAGPuRgC0U3Uccv4mMlzY

https://planetradio.co.uk/northsound/local/news/asthma-suffers-appeal-for-vaccine-priority/

https://www.facebook.com/asthmaandallergyfoundation/videos/424962868607623/

Some people with asthma are included in a ‘priority group’ for vaccination because of their age or vulnerability linked to other illnesses. Your healthcare team will be in touch to invite you for a vaccine.

If you live in England and you are aged 70 or over or have been told you are extremely vulnerable, you can book a vaccination for yourself. To do this you must be registered with a GP. Contact your GP for advice on how to book for a vaccine.

Please be assured that we are doing all we can to overturn this decision to ensure everyone living with asthma in the UK is vaccinated as priority. We are reviewing information and guidance on a regular basis so that we can continue to keep people living with asthma informed.

The NHS has already started to give vaccines to people. You will be contacted by the NHS for your vaccine appointment. We recommend you have a vaccination when it is offered. You should continue to follow government guidance on keeping safe.

Effective vaccines save lives and reduce hospitalisations from coronavirus. Any vaccine that is approved by the Government is effective.

The vaccines are given as two injections. The vaccines offer considerable protection after a single dose, at least in the short term. For both vaccines, the second dose completes the course and is likely to be important for longer term protection.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) has recommended that as many people on their priority list of at-risk groups should be offered a first vaccine dose as soon as possible.

The second dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine can be given between 3 to 12 weeks after the first.

The second dose of the AstraZeneca (Oxford) vaccine can be given between 4 and 12 weeks after the first.

This will protect the greatest number of people in the shortest possible time.

We do not yet know how long people who are vaccinated will be protected from coronavirus or if it prevents transmission.

No. Any vaccines that are available will have been approved because they pass the MHRA’s tests on safety and efficacy, so it is recommended people take up the offer of any approved vaccine.

There is no evidence yet that this vaccination prevents the transmission of the virus. Because of this, the families, carers and close contacts of people living with asthma will not be vaccinated at this stage. The supply of the vaccine is currently limited and people at greatest risk will be protected most effectively if they are vaccinated directly. Your family should continue to follow government guidelines such as social distancing, hygiene and isolate when you have symptoms or have been contacted by NHS track & trace.

It is important that people living with asthma continue to follow the latest government advice about things like social distancing and shielding. Follow the advice and restrictions for where you live in the UK. Visit government websites for guidance on what you can and cannot do in: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/coronavirus-covid-19-list-of-guidance

Read the AGCC press release here

Talk to our friendly team on 01224 973001

If you are worried and you need to talk, we are here to listen. From questions about coronavirus, to help in managing your asthma, we are here to support you every breath of the way.

Registered Charity No: SC042738

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