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COVID-19 and flu vaccines for unpaid carers

Winter can be a challenging time if you are looking after someone who is vulnerable. You may have more concerns about the health and safety of a family member, friend or neighbour that needs extra help.

Find out if you are eligible for the COVID-19 booster and flu vaccine this autumn.

Who is eligible for these vaccines?

This year, anyone aged 16 and over who receives carer’s allowance or is the main carer of an elderly or disabled person (who is at increased risk from flu or COVID-19) is eligible for both vaccines. This includes people who provide unpaid care as a family member, close friend or neighbour.


Why should I get these vaccines?

It is important that all those who are eligible, especially unpaid carers, take up the offer of both the COVID-19 booster and flu vaccines as soon as possible this season to help protect themselves and those around them.

The risk of COVID-19 and flu remains significant and vaccines remain our best defence against them.


How do I get the vaccines?

If you are known to your GP as a carer, you will receive invitations to book both your COVID-19 booster and flu vaccines.

If you are not known to your GP as a carer, you should speak to your GP or pharmacy for further information about how to access the flu vaccine. You can book the COVID-19 booster vaccination using the following methods:

There is no requirement to provide proof that you are a carer when attending vaccination appointments.


It's difficult to describe the help and support we give to those who are closest to us. The term 'unpaid carer' may not resonate with many of us, but it can be key to accessing essential support for you and the person you look after. If you would like to be recognised as an unpaid carer at your GP surgery, contact them directly and they can record your status. By registering as an unpaid carer at your GP surgery, you could:

  • Have greater flexibility with appointments
  • Access free annual health checks
  • Be invited for the latest vaccinations 

If you would like more information about registering as an unpaid carer, contact our Freephone Support Line (Mon-Fri, 9am-1pm) on 0800 0388 885.

We are here to help you navigate your caring role.

About the author

The Carers' Centre

Need to talk? Call our Freephone Support Line on 0800 0388 885 (Mon-Fri, 9am – 1pm)