Second dose - AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine

You should get your second dose of AstraZeneca 4 to 12 weeks after your first dose.

We’ll text you when it’s time. You don’t need to do anything. 

Your text message will have your appointment time and location. You can also go to an AstraZeneca dose 2 walk-in clinic when they are open.

Your second dose is important

AstraZeneca is a 2-dose vaccine.

You need to get 2 doses to:

  • have the best protection against COVID-19 
  • be protected for longer against COVID-19
  • have the best protection against new variants of the virus, including the Delta variant

Go to your appointment for your second dose when you are invited.

Read more about immunity after the AstraZeneca vaccine

Your second dose may be at a different location

Your second dose may be given at a different location to your first dose.

This could be a healthcare centre or a vaccination centre

We’ll let you know in the text message we send you. If you are a healthcare worker, your second dose will be at either your workplace or a vaccination centre.

Changing your appointment

If you cannot attend your appointment, you can ask for a new one.

If your appointment is at a HSE vaccination centre, reply to the text message we sent you with the word "New".

You won't be able to choose the day or time. You can only reschedule twice.

You will get a reply saying "Your appointment is now cancelled. We will send you another text message with your new appointment details in the coming weeks."

If you are waiting more than 12 weeks for an appointment

Phone HSELive if it has been more than 12 weeks since your first dose and you have not got an appointment for your second dose.

If it is less than 12 weeks, you don’t need to do anything. We will text you when it is your turn. 

Side effects

You're less likely to experience side effects after you get your second dose of AstraZeneca. But some people may still experience side effects.

Your vaccinator will be happy to answer any questions you have at your appointment.

If you are worried about side effects or getting your second dose, you can also talk to your doctor.

Very rarely, people may develop very unusual blood clots with low platelets. These blood clots are less likely to be reported after the second dose of the vaccine.

Read about possible side effects from the AstraZeneca vaccine

If you had a reaction to your first dose

Tell your vaccinator at your second dose appointment if there have been any changes in your medical history. This includes if you had a reaction to your first dose. They will advise you on what to do.

Getting an mRNA vaccine as your second dose

If you had a first dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine and you do not want a second dose of this vaccine, you can choose to get an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine instead. This will mean that you are fully vaccinated.

mRNA vaccines available in Ireland are the Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines.

Read about deciding to get a second dose mRNA vaccine after a first dose of AstraZeneca


This content was fact checked by vaccine experts working in Ireland.

Last updated: 2 September 2021 at 3:25pm