From 1 March, a new Pfizer COVID-19 bivalent vaccine will be available to eligible New Zealanders as a booster dose.
- This will replace the existing Pfizer booster and is considered likely to be more effective against Omicron subvariants than earlier vaccines.
- 9 million New Zealanders are currently eligible for a first or second booster and will be able to get the bivalent vaccine from 1 March. They will get a significant pre-winter boost to their protection from severe illness, hospitalisation and death from COVID-19.
- We encourage them to take this opportunity in March by visiting BookMyVaccine.nzor calling the COVID Vaccination Healthline on 0800 28 29 26 (8am to 8pm, 7 days a week).
From 1 April, an additional booster dose will be made available to:
- anyone aged 30 and over who has completed a primary course, as long as it’s been at least 6 months since their last COVID-19 booster or positive COVID-19 test.
- anyone at increased risk of severe illness from COVID-19who has completed a primary course, as long as it’s been at least 6 months since their last COVID-19 booster or positive COVID-19 test. These high-risk groups include:
- people aged 65 years and over
- Māori and Pacific peoples aged 50 years and over
- residents of aged care and disability care facilities
- severely immunocompromised people
- people aged 16 years and over who have a medical condition that increases the risk of severe breakthrough COVID-19 illness
- people aged 16 years and over who live with disability with significant or complex health needs or multiple comorbidities.
- health, aged care, and disability workers aged 30 years and over.
1 April is also the start of flu vaccination for 2023. We encourage everyone who is eligible to get their COVID-19 booster and flu vaccination to ensure that they are protected ahead of winter.
Staying up to date with the recommended COVID-19 vaccinations will continue to protect you from the risk of serious illness, hospitalisation, or death from COVID-19. This is particularly important as we approach the winter season.