Frequently asked questions

Please note all recruitment to join the NHS vaccination programme is now closed.

The FAQs on this page will remain to provide information for individuals who will be joining the NHS.

For the latest NHS information and advice about COVID-19 see the NHS.UK website.

For other recruitment queries in relation to the NHS COVID-19 vaccine team only you can email This mailbox is managed between Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm.

There are lots of roles available, and we are particularly keen to welcome back former colleagues to help in this national effort – especially if you have experience of vaccinating in the NHS. Training requirements for this group have been slimmed down to make the application process as simple as possible.

However, you don’t need to have experience in the NHS or as a vaccinator to play a role in this programme, either in a paid or voluntary capacity, so we would encourage everyone to take a look at the roles available to see whether they might be right for them.


We are extremely grateful to all former clinicians who have previously offered, or would now like, to come back and help support the NHS in its COVID-19 efforts.

We are keen to take up these offers as quickly as possible. Additional details are set out on our returning clinicians webpage.

We are sorry to hear this, and want to reassure you that we are grateful for your application.

We have had a huge amount of interest in these roles and teams in all of the organisations involved in the vaccination effort are working around the clock to process the tens of thousands of expressions of interest and applications we have collectively received.

If you received a notification confirming your details have been received, you do not need to do anything else, and the organising team will be in touch as soon as possible.

However, if you have been waiting for a month or more please contact the organisation you applied through using the details on their website.

Start dates will differ depending on the type of role you have applied for and likely location.

Many people have already started in their roles and are helping to protect patients now.

The deployment of new staff and volunteers will continue to be increased as vaccine stocks allow.

Not currently and although thousands of roles are being filled, we anticipate more people will be able to play a role as vaccine supplies increase. The organisation you apply through will announce deadlines, when appropriate, for applications or expressions of interest.

COVID-19 vaccinations are generally taking place 12 hours a day, 7 days a week, from 8am to 8pm. There will be a range of working pattern options to manage shifts and rest days through local rostering arrangements.  Roles are flexible so you can choose when you are able to support the programme.

Please check with the organisation you have applied through.

Vaccinations will be taking place in a range of NHS locations such as hospitals, GP practices, community pharmacies, and new dedicated vaccination centres. In all cases, full training and appropriate supervision and personal protective equipment will be available to ensure the safety of staff, volunteers and patients.

The pay varies depending on the role and can be found on the job adverts posted by the organisation you applied through.

Yes, you will be given all the training you need to ensure you can do the role you apply for safely and effectively.

Those who have applied for vaccinator roles will be provided with comprehensive online vaccination training, as well as in-person assessment and supervision.

This will depend on your previous experience.

Everyone will need to complete training on the make-up and handling of the vaccines we are using and how to spot and care for people suffering allergic reactions. These are crucial to ensure patient safety and that vaccines aren’t wasted.

Registered healthcare professionals with experience of vaccinating will not be required to provide proof of prior learning for other training they have done in the past if they are applying through the NHS Professionals route. Local recruitment is led by the Trusts concerned and requirements may vary.

People who haven’t vaccinated or worked in the NHS before will need to complete other training in line with that completed by other staff.

All training for volunteers is overseen by their employing organisation.

St John Ambulance are training their volunteers on some key elements of this training such as Infection Prevention and Control, as many of them will be performing patient care roles including vaccinators.

Royal Voluntary Service/NHS Volunteer Responders steward volunteers are not required to complete statutory and mandatory training.

Most of the training for these roles can be completed in advance at home through the e-Learning for Healthcare platform.

Vaccinators will be assessed and supervised on site to ensure their safety and that of patients.

NHS teams will request additional people through the Lead Employer, who oversee local recruitment needs, to support local vaccinations when the need arises. This will be dependent on local vaccine supplies and other workforce priorities.

When requests for additional people are made, you will then be contacted by the Lead Employer team inviting you to attend local onboarding and training before you start working at a vaccination site assigned to you.

Please look out for email communications from your Lead Employer.

Volunteers will be contacted by their voluntary organisation who coordinate requests with Lead Employers.

There are no specific actions for people waiting to be invited to start work. However, if you would like to, you can revisit any of e-learning modules including the COVID-19 vaccination, anaphylaxis and immunisation sessions. It is recommended you check the Gov.UK page for any updates to Chapter 14a of the Green Book before you start your first shift – you can see the list of updates by expanding the ‘show all updates’ link on the GOV.UK page.

You will need to complete new online training on the e-Learning for Health portal if additional vaccines become available following MHRA approvals. We will provide further information at the time.

The programme will pay for training time invested by those who applied for a vaccinator role through NHS Professionals or through local NHS recruitment routes and have since been invited to start work at a local vaccination site.

Lead Employers will arrange payment during the onboarding process. The amount paid will differ depending on the training required for a specific role and will be paid soon after completion of your first shift.

You must inform your site point of contact as soon as possible so that the shift can be filled by another person.

All staff and volunteers in patient-facing roles fall under the eligibility criteria of health and social care staff, and this group is being vaccinated now. This is a large group of people and those most at risk will be vaccinated first, so you may not be vaccinated immediately.

You do not have to wait to be vaccinated before taking on any shifts at a vaccination sites.

Everyone working in a vaccination service will be given and expected to wear appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) and follow other strict rules to keep themselves and patients safe.