If you are a foreigner residing in Andalucia you are eligible for Covid vaccines even if you are not currently registered with the Andalucia Social Security health system. 

You will need to first ensure that you are empadronado or registered as a resident in the town hall for a minimum of 3 months, and obtain a certificate of empadronamiento (which is valid for 3 months). 

If you are a pensioner you will need the document S1 from your home country.

With these documents, and your passport and residence document you can obtain a tarjeta sanitaria or health card from your local ambulatorio (health centre). You will then be included in the vaccination programme and will be contacted (usually by phone) when your appointment is due.

The Junta de Andalucia (the regional government) recommends contacting the consulate of your country of origin for further advice on how to be included in the vaccination programme.


I am not a resident in Spain, can I get vaccinated here?

At present non-residents are not being offered vaccination. 


How safe is the vaccine?

To date more than 150 million doses of the vaccine have been given worldwide, and side effects have been very closely monitored.

The usual side effects common to most vaccines have been identified. These are generally mild such as a sore arm, tiredness, headache or aching joints for a few days. The very rare occurrence of a serious allergic reaction (anaphylaxis) is also a feature of all vaccines. No long-term complications have been reported.


Can I be vaccinated privately?

At present, the vaccines are exclusively controlled by the Andalucian Social Security health system and cannot be obtained elsewhere in Spain. 

During this season’s influenza vaccine program the flu vaccine was initially only available only through the Andalucia Social Security health system and later on was also made available through some private clinics.  

So far we have no information as to whether the same policy may be applied to Covid-19 vaccines. In the light of this it is recommended to have the vaccine through the Social Security health system if you are eligible. Should the situation change you will be alerted via this blog or by email if you are included on our waiting list.


Can I choose which vaccine I have?

Vaccines are given according to availability at the time, and you cannot choose. 


I have had Covid-19 infection. Do I still need the vaccine?

Most people who have had the infection will probably have some immunity for at least 8-10 months although it is not yet known if it may last longer. There have also been cases of reinfection after having recovered from the illness, so immunity is not guaranteed.

It is very likely that vaccination will provide a better and longer lasting protection than the infection itself and vaccination in these people seems to be equally safe.

The current guidelines in Spain recommend vaccination for those who have had Covid-19 infection (and do not have any contraindications) with the following conditions:

  1. Anyone over 55 yrs should receive the normal vaccination scheme after they have recovered from the Covid infection and at least 14 days from the start of the illness.
  2. Anyone in a high risk group such as health care professionals, carers of vulnerable people etc should receive the normal vaccination scheme after they have recovered from the Covid infection and at least 14 days from the start of the illness. 
  3. Those aged 55 or less (even if they have risk factors) need only 1 dose which should be delayed until 6 months after the diagnosis of the infection.


Once vaccinated do I still need to take precautions?

It is not yet known if vaccinated people could still become infected without symptoms and unknowingly pass on that infection to others. 

It is also not known if new variants of the Covid-19 virus could cause illness in those already vaccinated. For these reasons the same precautions should be followed as for those unvaccinated.


Does the vaccine protect against the new UK variant of the virus?

Based on the data available so far, the currently used vaccines are effective against this and other strains that are commonly circulating in Europe


After I get vaccinated will Covid-19 tests show up positive?

The PCR and antigen tests will not show positive due to the vaccine (but could be positive due to a new infection).

Antibody tests may show positive and indicate a state of immunity. The ELISA  antibody is recommended in this case. Click here for more information about Covid-19 tests


I suffer from allergies. Can I have the vaccine?

The only absolute contraindication (must never be given) to the Pfizer, Moderna and AstraZeneca vaccines is a previous history of severe allergic reaction (e.g. anaphylaxis) to a component of that vaccine.

Examples are allergy to; polyethylene glycol (in the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines), and polysorbate (in the AstraZeneca vaccine).

A relative contraindication is giving the vaccine during pregnancy (that is to say the vaccine should be avoided, but in special circumstances may be given). This is not due to any known problems in pregnancy, but rather to a lack of sufficient data to be sure it is safe. Those at high risk of Covid-19 may be offered the vaccine after discussion with their doctor.

It is no contraindication (can be safely given) in the case of;

  1. Allergies to different components of other vaccines which are not present in the Covid-19 vaccine. 
  2. Food, animal, insect, environmental, latex or other allergies.





Dr. Anthony Crichton-Smith- GP


Categories: COVID-19,Vaccines
Post by: Atlantic Clinic on 11 Mar 2021