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Booster dose of the COVID-19 vaccine

The protection from previous doses or a COVID-19 infection may weaken over time.

Booster doses help boost your antibodies and give you good protection from becoming seriously ill or needing to go to hospital if you get COVID-19.

Seasonal booster doses

Seasonal boosters are recommended for some people at higher risk of COVID-19 illness.

The Spring COVID-19 booster programme has now ended. We will update this page with more information on seasonal COVID-19 booster recommendations when they are available.

If you have any questions about getting a booster dose, call HSELive on 1800 700 700.

If you are pregnant

Read about booster doses needed during pregnancy.

Booster dose safety

Many countries have given multiple doses of COVID-19 vaccines. There have not been any unexpected safety concerns so far. The safety of the vaccines continues to be monitored by the European Medicines Agency (EMA). The side effects of the adapted Pfizer/BioNTech vaccines are similar to the original vaccines. The most regularly reported side effects are headache, fever, and tiredness.

Myocarditis and pericarditis are inflammatory heart conditions and are very rare risks of mRNA vaccines. These rare side effects are more common in men under the age of 30 years after their second primary vaccine dose. The risk of these side effects appears to be lower after the first booster.

Read more about COVID-19 vaccine side effects

Page last reviewed: 14 June 2024