In England, primary care providers use standardised coding systems to record health events such as vaccination as well as patient characteristics. This information can be automatically extracted to estimate coverage for vaccine programmes delivered through primary care, in the general population as well as in specific geographical, ethnic, age or clinical groups. This system provides timely vaccine coverage estimates as well as the flexibility to extract tailored data in order to directly inform a continuously evolving national vaccine programme. It is however limited by the quality and completeness of clinical coding in primary care. A centralised, individual-level register would however improve data quality, completeness and reliability and remains the gold standard.