COVID XBB vaccine available 7 March

A vaccine to combat the newer strains of COVID-19 will be available to New Zealanders next month.

Pharmac and Te Whatu Ora issued a joint media release today about the upcoming availability of the updated COVID XBB vaccine. The vaccine will be available to the public from March 7. Key messages on the new vaccine can be found in our Dropbox.

You are invited to join IMAC and Te Whatu Ora to a webinar being held next Tuesday 27 February to discuss the vaccine. Further information about the webinar is found on IMAC’s website.

Webinar details

Date:                Tuesday, 27 February 2024

Time:                5.30pm – 6.00pm

To attend:       Register here

FINAL REMINDER: Free MenB catch up period ends 28 February 2024

Meningococcal B and Meningococcal ACWY vaccines are free for those aged between 13 and 25 years (inclusive) who are entering within the next three months, or in their first year of living in boarding school hostels, tertiary education halls of residence, military barracks, Youth Justice facilities or prisons.

Until 28 February 2024, there is also a free catch-up period for MenB vaccines, for those aged 13 to 25 years in any year of a close living facility.

Te Whatu Ora issued a media statement on 23 January to encourage young people get immunised.

Eligible young people encouraged to have free meningococcal vaccines

As long as the first dose is given before the free catch-up period ends, the second dose can be claimed even if it’s administered after 28 February 2024.

Details for accessing collateral to help promote Meningococcal vaccines can be found at the end of this email.

Protection against meningococcal disease advert Protection against meningococcal disease advert Protection against meningococcal disease advert

Data breach update

Te Whatu Ora has started notifying individuals impacted by the alleged unauthorised data release by a former staff member late last year.

Included in the data release is a large number of Covid-19 vaccinators whose personal information was contained in a file that could be downloaded from a United States-based blog site.

If you are or have been a Covid-19 vaccinator and you have questions or are concerned about your information, please call our dedicated free helpline on 0800 321 671 between 8.30am-5pm Monday to Friday and 8am-6pm Saturday and Sunday. You can also email

We have a range of support in place for anyone who needs it.  Find out more on our website

Our regular reminders on collateral

Dropbox downloadable collateral

Don’t forget all our immunisation collateral is available on Dropbox for health care providers to use when promoting vaccinations. Please feel free to share this link and the collateral widely with your other healthcare colleagues: Dropbox – National Immunisation Programme – vaccine resources.

Collateral in HealthEd

Immunisation resources are also available from HealthEd. We have added some of our immunisation collateral to HealthEd under the vaccinations and immunisations topic. You can now download the resource PDF directly from the HealthEd website, and printed copies of some resources are available to order through Bluestar. If you don’t already have a Bluestar login account, please see below on how to sign up.

Collateral in Bluestar

Printed copies of some resources can be ordered for free via the Bluestar portal. If you’re not already registered, you can register on the Bluestar portal. Below the login details, select ‘Need to Register?’. Complete the online registration form, include your clinic/practice/pharmacy name and your contact details. You will receive an email confirming your registration. Remember to click the button in the email to 'Activate' your registration.

Where can I get more information?

We're here to help!  If there is anything we can do to help with your vaccination promotion activity, or if you need any comms assistance please reach out to the team:

Health sector Comms and Engagement

Māori Comms and Engagement

Pacific Comms and Engagement

Media issues

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