COVID-19: How to get a vaccine – for border and MIQ workers

Border and managed isolation and quarantine (MIQ) workers are the first to get the COVID-19 vaccine. Find out who this includes, when and how to get vaccinated.

Last updated: 1 March 2021

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Who is a border and MIQ worker

This is all workers who undergo mandatory COVID-19 testing as part of their work.

Border workers

  • Aircrew members who qualify based on the border order 
  • Flight or ship workers who spend more than 15 minutes in an enclosed space (plane or ship) and qualify based on the border order
  • Airside government officials
  • Airside DHB workers
  • Airside retail, food, beverage workers
  • Airside cleaners
  • Airline or airport workers interacting with international passengers and baggage
  • Other landside workers interacting with international passengers
  • Pilots, stevedores working on or around, and people who board an affected ship
  • Workers who transport to or from an affected ship
  • Other port workers who interact with people required to be in isolation
  • Health workers providing COVID-19 testing services to these sites.

Managed isolation and quarantine (MIQ) workers

  • All MIQ workers
  • MIQ healthcare workers including medical, nursing and support staff who provide services to these facilities
  • Workers who transport to or from MIQ.

Roll-out date for border and MIQ workers

Vaccinations for border and MIQ workers starts on 20 February in Auckland, with other regions following soon after.

How you’ll be contacted

If you’re a border or MIQ worker, we’ll confirm your contact details through our records and your employer. These will be added to the COVID-19 Immunisation Register and shared with DHB Health workers.

A health worker from your regional DHB will then get in touch and invite you to be vaccinated.

Making an appointment

Vaccinations will be available onsite at or near your place of work. You can book your vaccination at the same time as your regular testing schedule.

You should talk to your employer about your work commitments before confirming an appointment time. This will help to avoid everyone being off the job at the same time.

A health worker will then be in touch to book and confirm your appointment. They’ll answer any questions you have.

If you haven’t been contacted

If you’re not contacted by a health worker to make an appointment, let your employer know. They’ll sort this for you.

If you can’t make your appointment

If you can’t make your appointment, follow the instructions that were on your booking form.


Nominating the people you live with

When you receive your appointment, you’ll be sent a link to an online form. You can use this to enter the details of the people you live with (household contacts) who will also be offered the vaccine.

Their details will be added to the COVID Immunisation Register. They’ll be contacted later, once the roll-out to border and MIQ workers has started.

For people who can’t easily access online or digital systems, you can call 0800 282 926


Getting your vaccination

At your appointment a health professional will tell you about the vaccination process and what to expect.

You’ll get your first dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech (Comirnaty) vaccine into your upper arm.

After your vaccine you’ll need to stay behind for 30 minutes. This is a precaution to make sure you don’t have any immediate allergic or adverse reactions.

What to expect at your vaccination

Your consent and privacy

Before you get the vaccine, you’ll be asked:

  • To give consent to receive the vaccine. This is standard procedure for any vaccination.
  • For your permission to notify your employer that you’ve received the vaccine.

Your privacy when getting vaccinated

Returning to daily life

Once you’ve waited 30 minutes and you’re feeling okay, you can return to your day.

Before you leave, you’ll be given a record card with your immunisation date and the batch number. You’ll also get a fact sheet with information on side effects. These are usually mild and don’t last long.

After your immunisation (PDF, 79 KB)
Side effects Pfizer/BioNTech (Comirnaty) vaccine

Getting your second dose

You’ll need to get your second dose of the vaccine 3 weeks later. Make sure you get the second dose so you have the best protection.

You should get an automated reminder about your second appointment closer to the time.


Testing after you’ve been vaccinated

We don’t yet know how long the COVID-19 vaccine will protect you for or if it will stop you from catching and passing on the virus.

Until we know for sure, we need to assume there’s still a risk of transmission. This means the mandatory COVID-19 testing of our border and MIQ workers needs to continue.

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