The Public Health Agency of Sweden
Updated 16 August 2021

Vaccination against COVID-19

COVID-19 is a new and highly infectious disease that can cause serious illness and even death. The COVID-19 vaccines approved for use in Sweden provide good protection against becoming seriously ill. Vaccination is voluntary and free of charge.

Vaccination protects you and others

The COVID-19 vaccination offers strong protection against serious illness. There is a slight risk that you can still get COVID-19 even if you have been vaccinated, although if you do, your symptoms will most likely be mild. Since the risk of becoming ill is low, it is also less likely that you will infect others. Experience from other countries has shown that the spread of infection decreases as more and more people are vaccinated. For this reason, vaccination is key to helping stop the pandemic.

What protection does vaccination provide?

The vaccines being offered in Sweden are given in two doses. The first dose will provide you with good protection after three weeks, but you will need a second dose for longer-lasting protection. You will not need to be given the first dose again or receive an extra dose if it takes a little longer than the recommended time between your first and second dose. It is essential that you have the second dose to extend and boost your protection.

Who is offered vaccination against COVID-19?

You do not need to be a Swedish citizen to get the vaccine. If you live or have been in Sweden for a long time, you will be offered vaccination. People seeking asylum or who are in Sweden without a permit will also be offered free vaccination.

About the vaccination

Your local authority is responsible for the COVID-19 vaccine rollout in your area. The Healthcare Guide 1177 has answers to the most frequently asked questions about the vaccinations.

Before you are vaccinated you will need to fill in a health declaration form. A nurse will inject the vaccine into your upper arm. After your injection, you should wait for 15 minutes before leaving the premises. This is so the person who has given you the vaccine can make sure you are fine and are not having an allergic reaction.

How you might feel after your vaccination

You might experience some tenderness, swelling or redness at the injection site, or your upper arm might itch. Some people develop a short-term fever, headaches or might feel generally unwell. This is to be expected and is a sign that the immune system is responding. The symptoms are often mild and will clear up after a few days. Allergic reactions are very rare.

If you experience side effects

If you are unwell or concerned after your vaccination, call 1177, describe your symptoms and tell the person you talk to that you were recently vaccinated against COVID-19.

Serious side effects are extremely rare. If you experience any of the following symptoms, call 1177 or seek medical help immediately:

  • difficulty breathing or chest pain;
  • swelling, redness or pain in your arms (beyond the injection site) or legs;
  • severe stomach pain;
  • a persistent nosebleed that is difficult to stop;
  • a severe and long-lasting headache;
  • blurred vision;
  • new and large bruises or blood spots under the skin or in your mouth.

Report suspected side effects

The Swedish Medical Products Agency is monitoring the safety and effectiveness of the vaccines being used in Sweden.

Report any suspected side effects via the Agency’s website

The National Vaccination Register

All vaccinations against COVID-19 will be recorded in the National Vaccination Register to enable follow-ups. This information is confidential.