Publication - Advice and guidance

Coronavirus (COVID-19): advice for unpaid carers

Published: 17 Aug 2020
Last updated: 20 Jan 2021 - see all updates

Guidance for those who provide unpaid care to friends or family.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): advice for unpaid carers

Unpaid carers and COVID-19 vaccines

The Scottish Government is adopting the Joint Committee for Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) recommendations on priority vaccine groups as set-out below.

Priority Group

Risk group


Residents in a care home for older adults
Staff working in care homes for older adults


All those 80 years of age and over
Frontline Health and social care workers


All those 75 years of age and over


All those 70 years of age and over
Clinically extremely vulnerable individuals (not including pregnant women and those under 16 years of age)


All those 65 years of age and over


Adults aged 16 to 65 years in an at-risk group, including adult carers.
See table three of the Greenbook for further information on those who will be included in group 6.


All those 60 years of age and over


All those 55 years of age and over


All those 50 years of age and over


Unpaid carers aged 16 to 65 will be prioritised for the COVID-19 vaccine alongside those with underlying health conditions which puts them at risk of the virus. Carers aged 65 and above will be able to access the vaccine earlier under the initial groupings.

Timescales for carers and others to receive the vaccine will become clearer as we know more about vaccine approvals and when supplies will be available.

We will seek to write out to as many carers as possible to inform them of their eligibility for the vaccine but we recognise this will not reach everyone who needs it so this will be supplemented by wider public messaging and other forms of communications.

We will be updating this page when more information is available but unpaid carers may wish to keep in touch with their local carer centre for up to date information on timings for these vaccinations.

Find details of your local carer centre at Care Information Scotland's website.

For further information, see the NHS Inform coronavirus vaccine web-page. If you have any enquiries about the COVID-19 vaccine, you can contact the Coronavirus Vaccination Helpline on 0800 030 8013 (available 8am - 8pm all week).

First published: 17 Aug 2020 Last updated: 20 Jan 2021 -