Here's a checklist of the vaccines that are routinely offered to everyone in the UK for free on the NHS, and the ages at which they should ideally be given.
If you're not sure whether you or your child have had all your routine vaccinations, ask your GP or practice nurse to find out for you. It may be possible to 'catch up' later in life.
The leaflet for the Meningitis B vaccination being introduced in September 2015 can be found at:
Meningitis B leaflet for parents
6-in-1 (DTaP/IPV/Hib/ Hep B) vaccine – this single jab contains vaccines to protect against five separate diseases: diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis (whooping cough), polio and Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib, a bacterial infection that can cause severe pneumonia or meningitis in young children)
Pneumococcal (PCV) vaccine
6-in-1 (DTaP/IPV/Hib/ Hep B) vaccine, second dose
Rotavirus vaccine, second dose
6-in-1 (DTaP/IPV/Hib/Hep B) vaccine, third dose
Pneumococcal (PCV) vaccine, second dose
Between 12 and 13 months
Hib/Men C booster, given as a single jab containing meningitis C (second dose) and Hib (fourth dose)
Measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine, given as a single jab
Pneumococcal (PCV) vaccine, third dose
3 years and 4 months, or soon after
Measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine, second dose
4-in-1 (DTaP/IPV) pre-school booster, given as a single jab containing vaccines against diphtheria, tetanus, whooping cough (pertussis) and polio
Around 12-13 years
HPV vaccine, which protects against cervical cancer (girls only) – three jabs given within six months
Around 13-18 years
3-in-1 (Td/IPV) teenage booster, given as a single jab which contains vaccines against diphtheria, tetanus and polio
65 and over
Flu (every year)
Pneumococcal (PPV) vaccine
Seasonal Flu Vaccination
Influenza – flu – is a highly infectious and potentially serious illness caused by influenza viruses. Each year the make-up of the seasonal flu vaccine is designed to protect against the influenza viruses that the World Health Organization decide are most likely to be circulating in the coming winter.
Regular immunisation (vaccination) is given free of charge to the following at-risk people, to protect them from seasonal flu:
- people aged 65 or over
- people with a serious medical condition
- people living in a residential or nursing home
- the main carers for an elderly or disabled person whose welfare may be at risk if the carer becomes ill
- healthcare or social care professionals directly involved in patient care
- those who work in close contact with poultry, such as chickens.
Pregnant women & Vaccinations
It is recommended that all pregnant women should have the flu vaccine, whatever stage of pregnancy they are in. This is because there is good evidence that pregnant women have an increased risk of developing complications if they get flu.
Studies have shown that the flu vaccine can be safely and effectively given during any trimester of pregnancy. The vaccine does not carry risks for either the mother or baby. In fact, studies have shown that mothers who have had the vaccine while pregnant pass some protection to their babies, which lasts for the first few months of their lives.
Whooping cough vaccine in pregnancy
Pregnant women can help protect their babies by getting vaccinated
Whooping cough (Pertussis) vaccination
Vaccines for special groups
There are some vaccines that are not routinely available to everyone on the NHS but which are available for people who fall into certain risk groups, such as pregnant women, people with long term health conditions and healthcare workers.
These extra vaccines include hepatitis B vaccination, TB vaccination and chickenpox vaccination.
There are some travel vaccines that you should be able to have free on the NHS from your local surgery. These include the hepatitis A vaccine, the typhoid vaccine and the cholera vaccine. Other travel vaccines, such as yellow fever vaccination, are not available at the surgery, but may be available elsewhere privately. Find out more from our section on Travel Health or the NHS website on travel vaccinations.