his preliminary advice has been developed following a request from the Department of Health and Social Care and Public Health England, to facilitate planning for the deployment of any safe and effective vaccine(s) as soon as licensure is obtained for use in the UK. The underlying principle of this advice is to save lives and protect the NHS. This document forms a preliminary framework for refining future advice for the basis of a national COVID-19 vaccination strategy.

This early interim advice has been developed based on a review of UK epidemiological data on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic so far. No data are currently available on the efficacy and safety of COVID-19 vaccines in development. This is the start of a longer process, and the advice provided at this stage is preliminary and limited in terms of detail. There are a number of unknown factors about any potential vaccines, and there are still important gaps in our understanding of COVID-19. The committee will be keeping its advice under review and as more information becomes available will update its advice as and when deemed appropriate.

Specifically, this advice will be updated as more information becomes available on:

  • vaccine efficacy and/or immunogenicity in different age and risk groups
  • the safety of administration in different age and risk groups
  • the effect of the vaccine on acquisition of infection and transmission
  • the transmission dynamics of the SARS-CoV-2 virus in the UK population, and
  • the epidemiological, microbiological, and clinical characteristics of COVID-19
  • NITAG Recommendation
  • United Kingdom