More Māori and Pacific peoples eligible for second COVID-19 vaccine booster

Broader second booster access will support higher vaccination rates among Māori and Pacific peoples and provide them with additional protection.

Māori and Pacific peoples aged 40 to 49 will be eligible for a second COVID-19 booster from Friday 18 November to provide additional protection from the virus.

The decision by the Director-General of Health to expand second booster eligibility follows a recommendation from the Ministry of Health’s COVID-19 Vaccine Technical Advisory Group (CV-TAG). Lowering the eligible age to 40 years will help to address health inequity.

Key points

  • Second COVID-19 booster will be available to Māori and Pacific peoples aged 40 to 49, 6 months after first booster.
  • Over 63,000 Māori and Pacific peoples will become eligible.
  • Second booster will be available for this group from Friday 18 November.

Helping reduce serious illness

Recent data reveals Māori and Pacific peoples remain at higher risk of severe outcomes from the virus. Over 63,000 people will immediately become eligible for the second COVID-19 booster.

First and second boosters help to reduce the chance of more serious illness and hospitalisation, so we strongly recommend people book in for the vaccines they are eligible for.

There is clear evidence that the burden from COVID-19 has fallen unevenly, and Māori and Pacific peoples are over-represented in COVID-19 hospitalisations with that risk increasing from the age of 40 years.

The broader second booster access will help support higher vaccination rates among Māori and Pacific peoples and provide them with additional protection.

Second boosters can be given at least 6 months after a first booster, and at least 3 months after a COVID-19 infection.

Based on current advice, for those who are not at risk of severe illness from COVID-19, a 2-dose primary course and a booster dose continue to provide very good and lasting protection from severe illness. By being more targeted in the rollout of the second booster, we can help reach the people that need it most.

Get your booster

First and second booster vaccines are available through walk-in and booked appointments at Māori and Pacific providers, pharmacies, general practice and other locations across Aotearoa. Appointments can be booked at (external link) or by calling the COVID-19 Vaccination Healthline on 0800 28 29 26.

We continue to review new information on COVID-19 and COVID-19 vaccines as it becomes available, and will make further updated recommendations if necessary.

COVID-19 vaccines

Last updated: at