Should I reduce the interval between my 1st and 2nd Astra Zeneca COVID 19 Vaccination doses?

Federal and State Governments have recently advised people living in Greater Sydney that they should consider getting their 2nd dose of AstraZeneca 4-8 weeks after their 1st dose, instead of 12 weeks. This change was made due to the imminent threat of increasing cases of the virus in the Greater Sydney area.

We now know that one dose does not protect you well from the Delta-variant currently circulating in Sydney. The 2nd dose gives you much higher protection against serious illness, hospitalisation and death. People can receive the second dose of AstraZeneca vaccine earlier to achieve better protection more quickly. We are now booking 2nd doses at 6 weeks.

However, getting your 2nd dose sooner than the original 12 weeks does have an impact of the effectiveness of the vaccine. If you reduce the dose interval you will still have good protection from severe illness but it does increase your chance of having symptoms if you contract the COVID-19 virus.

Like most decisions regarding vaccination or other prevention measures you need to consider your individual circumstances and the risks you face.

The table below shows the improved effectiveness at prevent symptomatic COVID-19 with longer dosing intervals.

If you already have your 2nd dose booked at 12 weeks and would like to bring it forward, please phone reception or make an appointment to discuss this with your doctor if you need further information.

References: The Lancet, Vol 397