Vaccination advice for incoming students

 

 
Please ensure that you have completed the vaccination survey - the link was sent by email on 19 August.


Like everywhere else in the world the COVID-19 pandemic has severely affected the community of those in the Colleges and University of Cambridge.  The virus is still with us, but compared with earlier waves of infection, the number of people in hospital, becoming seriously ill or dying is now very low.  This is because of the effectiveness of the UK vaccination programme.  

In his contribution to the Downing Street press conference on broadcast in the UK on 12 July, the Chief Medical Officer for England, Professor Chris Whitty made the following points, to emphasise the “overwhelming” value of vaccination:

  • Vaccination reduces the chances that you will catch COVID-19
  • Vaccination reduces the chance of being hospitalised or suffering severely from COVID-19
  • Vaccination reduces the chances of passing on COVID-19 to other people.

Vaccination against COVID-19 is now available to everyone present in the UK over the age of 18, whatever their nationality. So if you have not yet been vaccinated, please arrange for vaccination as soon as possible.   Two doses of the vaccine are needed, and they are given eight weeks apart.  Maximum immunity develops about two weeks after the second dose, so it is important to receive both doses of the vaccine.

If you are in the UK, vaccinations can be booked through the NHS online and in the UK there are walk-in vaccination centres available locally.  If you have your first dose of the vaccine over the summer, it will be possible, if it is necessary, for you to book your second dose in Cambridge, using the NHS booking site, or by visiting a walk-in centre.

If you are outside the UK, it is also important that you are vaccinated.  If you have only received one dose of the vaccine by the time you travel to Cambridge, it will be possible to receive your second dose, under the NHS (so free of charge) once you arrive in Cambridge.  In the UK, the Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna and AstraZeneca vaccines are the vaccines currently approved for use (although the AstraZeneca vaccine is not used in the UK for those below the age of 40), and if you have been vaccinated abroad with a different vaccine, the NHS recommends that your vaccination is “topped-up” with a UK approved vaccine.  Arrangements for any vaccinations in the UK can be made as soon as you have registered with an NHS doctor, which you must do in any case soon after arriving in Cambridge.

In addition, there is comprehensive information on the Stay Safe Cambridge Uni vaccination web page. This includes links to information for people who have received doses of vaccine outside the UK.

As part of stage 4, after 16 August, people who have been fully vaccinated will no longer have to isolate for ten days after being in contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19.  Isolation will still be required for those who are not vaccinated.

At present, the vaccination programme has not been extended to those under 18, so those new students who will have not reached their 18th birthday when they arrive should arrange to be vaccinated once they are 18.  

 

Offer holders / Arriving in Cambridge