COVID19 VACCINE UPDATE
Posted on August 12, 2021 by Lisa Martin
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Please see below update received this morning from Ministry of Health:
ACCELERATING THE VACCINE ROLLOUT
GAP BETWEEN DOSES EXTENDED
From today, the standard gap between the first and second doses of the COVID-19 vaccine will be 6 weeks.
Moving to a longer gap enables more people to have their first dose of the vaccine sooner. This is an important part of New Zealand being prepared for a possible outbreak of the more infectious Delta variant of the virus.
If you have already had your two doses closer together than six-weeks, you have received great protection against COVID-19. Early research shows that an extended gap between doses of the Pfizer vaccine also gives a robust immune response.
If you have vaccinations booked that are less than six weeks apart, you can keep your second appointment or choose to change it. For example, people with specific clinical treatment plans (such as those about to commence immunosuppressive treatment) or those at higher risk of contracting COVID-19 like border workers may be advised to have their doses with a shorter gap. The two doses must be given at least 21 days apart.
We also know people travelling overseas may require their doses sooner. This is okay too – it’s better to get two doses of the vaccine than to travel without being fully vaccinated.
The important thing is that you get two doses to be fully vaccinated.
The vaccine rollout is on track to make the vaccine available to everyone in New Zealand aged 16 and over by the end of the year.
Group 4 age bands opening sooner
Increasingly, the Group 4 age bands are opening as more vaccination sites open (including many general practices and pharmacies). So far, more than 2 million doses of the vaccine have been delivered, with more than 800,000 people fully vaccinated.
Upcoming age band openings: