COVID-19 Vaccinations

Getting a COVID-19 vaccine is an important step you can take to protect yourself, your kaumātua and whānau from the effects of the virus. It’s one way we can fight the COVID-19 pandemic and protect the welfare and wellbeing of our communities.

By having the vaccine you’ll be playing your part to the community. The COVID-19 vaccine will help protect you, and your family. It will save lives.

How the vaccine works

Vaccines work by teaching the body’s immune system to respond quickly to infection without being exposed to the infection itself.

The Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine is known as a ‘messenger RNA’ vaccine. These vaccines don’t use virus cells at all – instead, they contain a piece of RNA code that essentially teaches your body to recognise the virus. It can respond straight away if you get infected.

The vaccine won’t give you COVID-19 or affect your DNA

It will not give you COVID-19 and it will not affect your DNA or genes. It does not contain any live virus, dead or deactivated virus.

Get a free vaccine

Contact us to see if you qualify for a free COVID-19 vaccination. Any information we collect will not be used for immigration purposes.

It will not be mandatory for the general public. You can choose whether to get vaccinated.

  • If you’re under 16 years old: People under the age of 16 are not included for now. Limited data is available for this age group as they weren’t part of the clinical trials.
  • If you’re over 65 years old: The Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine has shown to be highly effective in older adults aged 65 and over. If you have any questions or concerns, talk to your vaccinator or doctor first.
  • If you’re pregnant or breastfeeding: Pregnant women can become very sick if they get COVID-19. If you are pregnant and choose to get vaccinated, you can get early access. If you’re pregnant, breastfeeding or planning to have a baby, you should discuss your situation and the benefits and risks of receiving the vaccine with your midwife or doctor.
  • If you’ve had or plan to get other vaccinations: We recommend at least a two-week gap between the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine and influenza (flu) vaccine. You should have a four-week gap between the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine and the Measles Mumps Rubella vaccine.
  • If you’re on blood-thinning medication: If you’re on blood-thinning medications or have a bleeding disorder, let your vaccinator know.
  • If you’re receiving cancer treatment: You should get advice from your specialist if you’re receiving these cancer therapies: Pembrolizumab (Keytruda), Nivolumab (Opdivo), Ipilimumab (Yervoy), Atezolizumab (Tecentriq).
  • If you’ve had an allergic reaction to any vaccine: If you’ve had a severe or immediate allergic reaction to any vaccine or injection in the past, discuss this with your vaccinator.

Information sourced from covid19.govt.nz and australia.gov.au with modification.