How effective and safe the coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine is for people with Parkinson's, and what you need to know about the roll out.
This page was last updated on 28 March 2022 at 10.58am. This advice is updated as new information becomes available.
Is the vaccine safe for people with Parkinson's?
The UK has some of the highest safety standards in the world. All approved vaccines meet the strict standards of safety, quality and effectiveness set out by the UK’s medicines regulator, the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).
So far, millions of people have been given a coronavirus vaccine. Reports of serious side effects, such as allergic reactions or clotting problems, have been very rare.
Our Clinical Director, Dr Donald Grosset, advises:
"The vaccine is safe for people with Parkinson's. There is no interaction with Parkinson's medication. Parkinson's is specifically included as one of the conditions that is in a 'clinical risk group' and every adult with Parkinson's should get the vaccine."
Am I currently eligible for the vaccine?
If you haven't had your first, second or a booster dose of the vaccine, find out how to book your vaccination where you live:
Vaccination is not compulsory.
Be alert to fraud. There have been reports of scams asking you to book your vaccine or pay for the vaccine, claiming to be from the NHS. Scams can be via text message, letter, phone call, email or door-to-door.
Will I receive a second booster?
Following a recommendation from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), a spring booster vaccine programme started across the UK in March 2022. This is a fourth dose of the vaccine to increase protection against coronavirus in certain high risk groups. Not everyone with Parkinson's will be eligible for this vaccine.
Spring boosters will be offered 6 months after your last coronavirus vaccination, to:
- adults aged 75 years and over
- residents in a care home for older adults
- individuals aged 12 years and over who are immunosuppressed, or have weakened immune systems.
If you are eligible, the NHS will contact you, or you can book online.
You will be advised about which vaccine (Pfizer, Moderna or Oxford/AstraZeneca) is best for you. This may be different to your previous vaccines.
If you've had the vaccine
The vaccine isn’t 100% effective, but it dramatically reduces your risk of becoming seriously ill with coronavirus. And it reduces your risk of passing on the virus to others.
Vaccinations provide a good level of protection against the virus, so you can be more confident about working, travelling and socialising safely. A booster vaccine helps improve the protection you have from your previous doses of the vaccine.
You can continue to take any measures that feel suitable and right to you, for example by avoiding crowded places or asking visitors to your home to wear face coverings. Read more of our latest advice on coronavirus and Parkinson's.
If you've had the coronavirus vaccine and are experiencing side effects, please report it on the government's Yellow Card website.
Getting my coronavirus vaccination: Hamish's story
Hamish, 78, lives in Inverness in Scotland and was diagnosed with Parkinson’s in 2016. He received his first dose of the coronavirus vaccination in February 2021 and said:
"From start to finish, it was a job very well done and since having the jab, I’ve had no side effects - other than relief."