We have just received the HSE updated information about the second dose of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine. Your second dose of COVID-19 Astrazeneca is due between 8 and 12 weeks after your first.
You don’t need to take any action – the HSE contact you with an appointment for your second dose.
Why you need a second dose
This is a two-dose vaccine. You need your second dose to provide increased and longer lasting protection from the course of vaccine. Having the second dose of the vaccine when it is offered to you ensures you have the best available protection from COVID-19 disease.
When to get your second dose
You should get your second dose of this vaccine between 8 and 12 weeks after your first dose. The recommended time between doses was recently changed from 16 or 12 weeks to 8 weeks.
The HSE is working to reduce the time between dose 1 and dose 2 to 8 weeks. It will take time to do this. It is still safe and effective to have your second dose 12 weeks after the first, but it is important to attend for your second dose when you are invited.
Where you will get your second dose
Some hospitals or healthcare sites who gave the first dose will refer people to a HSE vaccination centre for the second dose.
You don’t need to take any action, you will be sent a text message with an appointment time and location for your second dose.
Healthcare workers were mainly vaccinated by their workplace. Your second dose may be at your workplace, or you may also be referred to a vaccination centre.
People aged 50-69 years old who received the vaccine in a vaccine centre or from their GP will get their second dose from the same site.
How you will be notified
You will receive a text message if you are being offered a vaccine in a vaccination centre or a healthcare site with information about the date and time of your appointment. You should get your appointment between 12 and 8 weeks after the first dose.
Where can I check if my appointment is due?
If it is less than 12 weeks since your first dose, you don’t need to take any action.
If it is more than 12 weeks since your first dose and you have questions about your appointment, please contact HSELive on 1850 24 1850.
Side effects of the second dose
You will need to give your consent before you get your COVID-19 vaccine. Your vaccinator will be happy to answer any questions you have at your appointment.
You can also speak to a trusted health care provider like your doctor if you are concerned about getting the second dose of AstraZeneca vaccine.
I am under 50 – should I get the second dose?
It is important that people receive both doses of AstraZeneca vaccine, so that they have the best protection against COVID-19, including against the delta variant of concern which is spreading rapidly in the United Kingdom.
Very rarely 1 in 100,000 people may develop very unusual blood clots with low platelets after vaccination. These blood clots are less likely to be reported after the second dose of the vaccine.
Other brands of vaccines
Having a different COVID-19 vaccine from your first dose is not recommended by the National Immunisation Advisory Committee (NIAC). There is currently no data to support how well this protects people against COVID-19.
Please attend your appointment when it is offered
To make sure everyone gets their vaccine protection as early as possible – please attend your appointment when it is offered.
If you can’t attend, please let us know in advance – you can do this once you get your vaccine appointment text.
Protection from COVID-19
There is strong, reliable evidence that all the COVID-19 vaccines used in Ireland greatly reduce your risk of getting COVID-19. They are highly effective at preventing deaths and serious illness with COVID-19.
All COVID-19 vaccines used in Ireland have been approved by the European Medicines Agency as safe and effective against COVID-19 with the overall benefits outweighing the risks.