Winter Dose COVID-19 Vaccine

Book your winter dose vaccine today

The Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI) has approved a winter dose of COVID-19 vaccine for priority groups.

On 7 July, ATAGI expanded the eligibility criteria for winter dose to help reduce severe illness from COVID-19.

Winter dose is now available to:

  • adults aged 50 years and above
  • adults aged 30 and above now have the option to receive a winter dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.

In addition to the above, winter dose is also available to:

  • people aged 16 years and above who are severely immunocompromised
  • residents of aged care or disability care facilities
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 50 years and above
  • people aged 16 years and above who have a medical condition that increases the risk of severe COVID-19 illness
  • people aged 16 years and above who have disabilities with significant, complex, or multiple health issues, which increase the risk of poor outcomes from COVID-19 infection.

People who are now recommended to receive a fourth dose include people with:

  • immunocompromising conditions
  • cancers
  • specific chronic inflammatory conditions
  • chronic lung disease
  • chronic liver disease
  • severe chronic kidney disease
  • chronic neurological disease
  • diabetes requiring medication
  • chronic cardiac disease
  • disability with significant, complex, or multiple health issues, which increase the risk of poor outcomes from COVID-19
  • severe obesity
  • severe underweight.

Eligible people can receive their winter dose 3 months after receiving their third dose or after having COVID-19 if infection has occurred since the person’s third dose.

Pfizer and Moderna are the preferred vaccines for a winter dose for people aged 18 and above. People aged 16 to 17 can only get the Pfizer vaccine as their winter dose. AstraZeneca or Novavax can be used if an mRNA vaccine (such as Pfizer or Moderna) is contraindicated.

Winter doses are available at Victorian vaccination centres now, or at your local GP, pharmacy or Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation.

Preparing for your vaccine appointment

Ensure you are eligible to receive a vaccine at the recommended interval.

  • Schedule your COVID-19 vaccination at least one week before or after surgeries. This will reduce the chance that adverse events following the vaccination (such as fever) are attributed as surgical complications (such as wound infection).
  • Talk to your doctor or regular health professional if you have concerns about your health and getting a COVID-19 vaccine. You cannot consult a doctor on-site at a COVID-19 vaccine centre.
  • Bring these items to your vaccine appointment:
    • a face mask
    • any emails about your vaccination appointment (on your phone or printed)
    • photo identification, if you have one, such as a passport or driver’s licence
    • Medicare card or Individual Healthcare Identifier (IHI) number if you have don’t have a Medicare card. You can still get vaccinated if you don’t have a Medicare card or a IHI number.

  • Vaccines are free. There may be an additional charge if you get vaccinated at a GP or pharmacy.
  • Vaccinated or not, always remember to be COVIDSafe. Don’t go to a vaccine appointment if you think you may have COVID-19. If you have symptoms, get tested and isolate until you receive a negative result.
  • You must tell your immunisation provider beforehand if you are allergic to ingredients in a COVID-19 vaccine (such as polyethylene glycol in Pfizer or polysorbate 80 in AstraZeneca and Novavax) or have had anaphylaxis (a severe allergic reaction) to other vaccines and medicines.

After receiving your vaccine, you will be asked to wait for 15 minutes to make sure you’re okay. Vaccines are delivered by trained professionals who have medications and equipment on hand to respond to any issues.

For a day or two, you may experience some symptoms such as pain where you had the injection, muscle ache, headache, fever, or fatigue. Visit About COVID-19 vaccines for more information on vaccine side effects.

Visit Additional information for specific groups if you are pregnant; identify as an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander; are severely immunocompromised; have a history of blood clots or cardiac conditions or are someone with a disability or special requirement

If you have recently recovered from COVID-19

People over the age of 5 who have had COVID-19 and are due for their next dose of COVID-19 vaccine should wait 3 months from testing positive before getting their next vaccine dose.

Waiting for a 3-month period after infection before COVID-19 vaccination is to provide better and longer protection against re-infection from COVID-19.

Accessed 8th January 2022





As Victorians return to normal activities after two years of closed international borders and staying at home, 2022 is expected to be a bad flu season.

It is more important than ever to get your flu shot, be up to date with your COVID vaccination, know where to get help, wear a mask and do the other things we know can keep us well.

Doing this will help keep you and your friends, family, and community well, and protect a health system which is under pressure.

What you need to know

  • To stay well this winter, get your influenza (also commonly referred to as the flu) shot as soon as possible and keep your COVID vaccinations up to date.
  • You can get your flu shot and COVID vaccination at the same time.
  • The flu vaccine is free for people who are more at-risk from suffering complications from the flu.
  • Stay at home if you’re unwell – don’t go to work or school.
  • Most people can safely recover from the flu and COVID at home.
  • Keeping your distance from others, hand hygiene, good ventilation and mask wearing are still the best ways to avoid getting sick.
  • See your doctor before you are sick so they can help you make a treatment plan. This will help you get the right care, if and when you need it.
  • Your doctor is the best person to help you if you are unwell.

Protect yourself from the flu and COVID

The flu and COVID circulate all year round but winter is particularly bad for the spread of illness.

You can help yourself stay well by:

  • keeping 1.5 metre distance between yourself and other people
  • washing or sanitising your hands often
  • coughing or sneezing into your elbow
  • wearing a mask
  • ensuring there is good ventilation.

Masks offer good protection against COVID and can also help protect you from other respiratory illnesses like the flu.

If you can, see your doctor to talk about the best care for you if you get COVID or the flu this winter. This will help you get the right care, if and when you need it. Some people are eligible for prescription medicines that can reduce health complications and the need for hospitalisation with COVID or the flu, if taken soon after symptoms appear. Find out more from your doctor.

One of the best ways to stay well this winter is to have your flu shot and stay up to date with your COVID vaccinations.

You can get your flu shot or COVID vaccination from your pharmacist or doctor (GP). Pharmacists can administer the flu and COVID vaccine to anyone aged 5 years and over.

Flu vaccinations

Vaccination against the flu is recommended for everyone aged 6 months and over.

Getting your flu shot is easy and in Victoria is free for:

  • children aged 6 months to less than 5 years
  • people aged 65 years old and over
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people from 6 months and over
  • pregnant women – at any stage of pregnancy
  • people aged 6 months and older with medical conditions putting them at increased risk of severe flu and its complications.

Find out more information about flu shots online or speak with your doctor.

COVID vaccinations

Keeping up to date with your COVID vaccinations is important to stay well this winter.

Everyone in Australia aged 5 years and over is eligible for free COVID vaccinations.

For more information, visit Book your vaccine appointment.

You can also call 1800 675 398, 7 days a week, 8 am to 8 pm. For an interpreter, press zero (0).

Time between vaccinations

You can get your flu shot at the same time you get your COVID vaccination.

If you have had COVID but are no longer sick, you can get your flu shot right away.

You should wait three months after having COVID to get your next COVID vaccination.

If you are sick with the flu, wait until you feel better to have the flu or COVID vaccination.

In your language

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“Help your family stay safe this winter by getting vaccinated for both the flu and COVID-19, getting tested if you have any symptoms and staying home while unwell.” 

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