Getting a COVID-19 vaccine if you've had COVID-19

It’s recommended you wait 6 months after testing positive before getting any COVID-19 vaccination.

Last updated: 1 April 2023

Why you need to stay up to date with your vaccinations

Having COVID-19 does not provide the same level of immunity as getting vaccinated. We also know that your protection from the primary course of the vaccine decreases over time.

To keep your immunity levels high, stay up to date with your vaccinations including boosters. This will lower your chances of getting very sick from COVID-19 and ending up in hospital.

Why 6 months?

After you’ve had a COVID-19 infection, your antibody levels will be high from your immune system’s response to the infection. This will give you some protection against COVID-19.

After 6 months, your antibody levels from the infection are likely to have dropped and, if you are due to have a vaccine, this is a good time to be vaccinated to boost your immunity.

If you get a vaccination soon after you’ve been infected, you might not get the best possible benefit from the vaccine because your antibody levels will already be high.

However, if you are at high risk of severe disease if you do catch COVID-19 again, it’s recommended that you talk to your doctor, nurse, or healthcare provider for advice on timing of your next dose. It might be appropriate for you to receive your COVID-19 vaccine sooner than 6 months.

Back to top