COVID-19 vaccination guidance
We are very strongly encouraging vaccination, including boosters.
We are working with our NHS partners to enable access to vaccinations on or near our campuses.
The Science Museum is currently hosting a vaccination centre, located next to Imperial’s Dyson Building of Design Engineering.
Vaccination is free for everyone in the UK, including international students.
If you are registered with a GP surgery in England you can book your vaccination appointments on the NHS website.
Local councils in London have set up pop-up vaccination centres and vaccine buses for walk-in appointments, and there are several large vaccination centres around London which also offer walk-in appointments:
- Westminster: pop-up vaccination centres
- Kensington and Chelsea: vaccine bus
- Hammersmith and Fulham: vaccine bus
- Northwest London vaccination centres
If you have questions about the COVID vaccines, you can view this booklet produced by Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust [pdf].
Frequently asked questions
Do I need to be vaccinated in order to start my course at Imperial?
No, but we strongly encourage all students to get the vaccine if you are offered one in your home country, or to book one once you arrive in the UK if vaccination is not available to you in your home country.
All current medical students have been offered COVID-19 vaccinations. If you are still to be vaccinated, you will need to contact your GP or book in for your vaccination online.
Will I be able to have a vaccination in the UK?
Yes – all overseas visitors to England can access vaccination against COVID-19.
International students who live in the UK need to register with a GP (general practitioner) in order to access healthcare in the UK in general. Registration with a GP is encouraged in order to access the vaccine.
However, you do not require an NHS number or GP registration to receive the COVID-19 vaccination and you should not be denied vaccination on this basis. If you do not have an NHS number or are not registered with a GP, you are still entitled to free COVID-19 vaccinations. You can request to book COVID-19 vaccination appointments as an unregistered patient through a local GP practice.
If I have had one dose in my home country and then arrived in the UK, can I have my second dose in the UK?
If you have received a first dose of COVID-19 vaccine overseas that is also available in the UK, you should receive the same vaccine for your second dose.
The following three vaccines are currently available in the UK:
If the vaccine you received for your first dose is not available in the UK, you should be offered the most similar alternative. Your GP will be able to advise you on this.
Can I choose which vaccine I have?
If you are pregnant, or think you might be, it is preferable for you to have the Pfizer/BioNTech or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine. This is because they've been more widely used during pregnancy in other countries and have not caused any safety issues.
You'll be invited when your age group are offered it, or earlier if you have a health condition or reason that means you're eligible. During the booking process, you’ll be asked if you’re pregnant. This is to make sure you’re offered an appointment for the Pfizer/BioNTech or Moderna vaccine. Visit the NHS website for more information.
If you are under the age of 40, you'll only be shown appointments for the Pfizer/BioNTech or Moderna vaccine, and not for the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine. Visit the NHS website for more information.