Booster doses: general and in pregnancy

News

16 Nov 2021

Booster doses of the Pfizer vaccine will be available to all people 18 years or older from 29 November when it has been at least 4-6 months since your second dose. [UPDATED]
 
There is no need to rush to get the booster in general. The science shows fully vaccinated people remain well protected from infection, and from being seriously ill if they do get COVID-19. 
 
Our healthcare and border workers are a priority group for booster vaccine doses because they are on the front line against COVID-19 and because many of them completed their vaccine course 4-6 months or longer ago. [UPDATED]
 
It is also important for older people and those with medical conditions that put them at the highest risk from COVID-19, to get access to booster doses when they become eligible. 

Booster doses in pregnancy 

Pregnant women/people aged from 18 years who completed their primary series prior to pregnancy can receive a booster dose of mRNA-CV at any stage of pregnancy (from [UPDATED] four-six months after a primary course). Booster doses are particularly recommended for individuals most at high risk of exposure to SARS-CoV-2 or with significant medical issues that increase their risk for severe COVID-19. 

Boosters can be offered to pregnant people who completed their primary vaccination course more than [UPDATED] 4-6 months prior. Those approaching the full-term of their pregnancy 4-6 months after completing their primary course can choose to receive their booster after the baby is born if preferred.

Overall

There are currently 144,000 people in New Zealand who have been fully vaccinated for 6 months or longer and a further 455,847 who will be eligible for the booster dose by the end of the year. 
 
We need to keep up our good work to stay safe using distancing, face coverings, scanning, and staying at home if sick. 
 
Please encourage your whānau and friends to get vaccinated if they haven’t already. 
 
Key points: 
•    Vaccination clinics, pharmacies, and GPs can now provide booster doses. 
•    You will be able to book in to get your booster using the Book My Vaccine website [UPDATED] from 17 January. 
•    Boosters are recommended for anyone who has had their second dose at least [UPDATED] 4-6 months ago. 
•    Border workers, health workers, and those 65 years are encouraged to get their booster dose when eligible. 
•    Booster doses are not currently required for the public to get a vaccine certificate for access to events, gyms, churches, hairdressers, and other services and premises. 
•    [UPDATED] For people who are immunosuppressed and receiving the third dose of Pfizer as part of their primary vaccinations, they will need to wait at least 4 months after the third dose for the booster. 

Detail on boosters:

The first-line vaccine and first-line booster in Aotearoa New Zealand is the Pfizer vaccine. AstraZeneca is the second-line vaccine and may be used as an alternative booster dose in specified situations only and if the eligibility criteria in the Programme’s AstraZeneca policy statement are met. 

A prescription from an authorised prescriber is recommended when using the AstraZeneca vaccine as a booster dose or a second primary dose (i.e. following a non-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine for dose 1), in accordance with Section 25 of The Medicines Act 1981, as it is considered off-label use. 

Written consent is required for all consumers receiving a dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine. This Programme requirement will be regularly reviewed

More information: https://www.health.govt.nz/our-work/diseases-and-conditions/covid-19-novel-coronavirus/covid-19-vaccines/covid-19-vaccine-boosters

Please view The Ministry of Health's Booster Policy Statement here.

Last updated: 19 January 2022