NHS COVID Pass medical exemptions

The government has published guidance on how people can apply for official proof that, for medical reasons, they are unable to be vaccinated and/or tested for COVID-19. The possible reasons for exemptions are limited, and include:

  • People receiving end of life care where vaccination is not in the person’s best interests
  • People with learning disabilities or autistic individuals or people with a combination of impairments where vaccination cannot be provided through reasonable adjustments
  • A person with severe allergies to all currently available vaccines
  • Those who have had an adverse reaction to the first dose (for example, myocarditis)

Short-term exemptions will also be available for those with short-term medical conditions.

All exemptions must be confirmed by a doctor, specialist clinician or midwife and, if approved, your NHS COVID Pass can then be used wherever you need to prove your COVID-19 status within England.

The domestic NHS COVID Pass will look and work the same for people with medical exemptions as it will for people who are fully vaccinated. The pass will not show that you have a medical exemption.

To apply for a COVID Pass medical exemption, you need to phone 119 and ask for an application form. If you’re eligible to apply, you’ll get an application form by post. Find out more about COVID Pass medical exemptions on the government’s website.

DHSC guidance on the exemption from COVID-19 vaccination details the process and the clinical criteria.