Vaccinating workforce

To help support our immunisation programmes, we are developing our vaccinating workforce to keep New Zealanders safe and well.

Our vaccinating workforce is made up of general practitioners, nurses, midwives, and pharmacists and in response to the COVID-19 pandemic additional vaccinators were authorised to help rapidly vaccinate Aotearoa against COVID-19.

Building on the success of that programme, we have developed new vaccinating roles to support our regular vaccination programmes.

Vaccinating roles

There are a range of vaccinating roles that help deliver our immunisation programmes across the motu. Each have different pathways, training and authorisation requirements.

Fully Authorised Vaccinators

Fully Authorised Vaccinators are registered health professionals who have completed full vaccinator training and received authorisation. They can deliver vaccines listed on the New Zealand Immunisation Schedule and any other vaccines that are part of an approved immunisation programme to all eligible age groups.

If you are a Fully Authorised Vaccinator, to maintain your authorisation you must adhere to the requirements in the Immunisation Handbook 2020, including:

  1. Complete your update training
  2. Have a current Annual Practising Certificate
  3. Have a valid and relevant CPR certification 

To practice in your region, please apply to your local Medical Officer of Health for authorisation. Go to Public health contacts to find your region’s contacts.

Pharmacist Vaccinators

Pharmacists are able to vaccinate under the Medicines Regulations after completing full vaccinator training. We recommend they then inform the Pharmaceutical Society of New Zealand to be added to their vaccinator database.

If you are a Pharmacist Vaccinator, you must maintain all documentation and evidence that demonstrates you meet the Ministry’s Immunisation Standards for Vaccinators, as outlined in the Immunisation Handbook. This includes evidence of your:

  1. Clinical assessment
  2. Current Annual Practising Certificate
  3. CPR Certification
  4. All training courses, including biennial Vaccinator Update Course

Provisional Pharmacist Vaccinators

Provisional Pharmacist Vaccinators are registered Pharmacists or Pharmacist interns who have completed training and received provisional authorisation. They can administer Influenza (3 years and older) and MMR (16 years and older) vaccines, plus COVID-19 vaccines if they provide evidence of completing the required training.

Any Provisional Pharmacist Vaccinators authorised before 19 April 2022 need to reapply for authorisation under regulation 44A of the Medicines Regulations 1984 to enable them to administer the influenza vaccine to people aged 3 years and older. To do this you need to complete the Reauthorisation Provisional Pharmacist Vaccinator Form and send it to [email protected]

Provisional Pharmacist Vaccinators who were authorised after 19 April 2022 are automatically authorised to administer Influenza vaccines to people aged 3 years and older.

Provisional Vaccinators

Provisional Vaccinators (PVs) are registered health professionals who have completed their training and received provisional authorisation. They can administer influenza and MMR vaccines, plus COVID-19 vaccines if they provide evidence showing they have completed the required training.

The 2022 Provisional Vaccinator Foundation Course (PVFC) will offer health care providers further options as they respond to workforce pressures related to the Omicron variant, booster shots and administering the COVID-19 vaccine to 5–11-year-olds, alongside the MMR campaign and the influenza season.

The future of the provisional vaccinator role will be reviewed again later in the year in the context of the broader COVID response and health system needs.

Training package codes

Package codes have been created for every health provider/employer who can then share the package code with the learners they wish to support through the provisional vaccinator pathway.

If you are eligible for this training and interested in taking up the opportunity, you should ask your employer or the provider you intend to work for the package code. As an individual, please do not contact IMAC directly for a package code.

If you wish to also administer the Paediatric Pfizer vaccine, or Novavax vaccine you must complete the appropriate COVID-19 vaccine education course. See the suite of COVID-19 vaccination courses. All can be freely accessed via Immunisation Advisory Centre’s (IMAC) learning management system (LMS) and without a package code.

All current PVs are authorised for two years from the date of their authorisation letter.

To maintain your provisional vaccinator authorisation you must adhere to the requirements in the Immunisation Handbook 2020, including:

  1. Completing your update training (if it has been more than two years since the date you completed your original PV training course)
  2. Maintaining a current Annual Practising Certificate
  3. Holding a valid CPR certification 

You can access this training from these IMAC links:

The PV bridging course is now available through IMAC. More information can be found at Vaccinator Bridging Course on the IMAC website.

We strongly encourage Provisional Vaccinators to upskill to become fully authorised vaccinators, to vaccinate across a wider range of vaccine preventable diseases and across the lifespan.

COVID-19 Vaccinators working under supervision (CVWUS)

CVWUS are people who have worked in other healthcare settings, for example:

  • Kaiāwhina
  • Kaiārahi
  • Kaimanaaki
  • Pharmacy Technicians
  • Clinicians who have trained overseas but are not registered in New Zealand, or who were trained in New Zealand but no longer practice (and do not currently hold a practising certificate).

They are authorised to administer the COVID-19 Pfizer vaccine only to the age groups covered in the Ministry approved COVID-19 vaccinator training and must be supervised by a qualified and experienced health professional.

Resources for CVWUS Employers

CVWUS Training and authorisation pathway

Micro credentials for CVWUS

Once you have been authorised as a CVWUS, you are entitled to the COVID-19 Micro Credential. This is an NZQA Level 3 - 2 unit standards, containing 9 credits. Details for how you apply for this micro-credential are included in your authorisation letter. When you apply, you will need to provide the following documents with your application:

  • A copy of your COVID-19 Vaccinator (Working Under Supervision) authorisation letter, which is evidence that you have met the criteria.
  • A National Student Number (NSN). If you don’t have one or can’t remember your NSN number, then you will need to supply a form of identification such as a current New Zealand photo driver’s licence or a New Zealand passport. It can take up to 14 days for the application to be processed and your Record of Achievement to be updated.

Note
The CVWUS role will be disestablished on 1 June 2023. You will not be able to renew your CVWUS authorisation after this date. We will be transitioning current authorised CVWUS to the Vaccinating Health Worker (VHW) role as detailed below.

Vaccinating Health Worker

Background

During the initial rollout of COVID-19 vaccinations, the Ministry of Health established the CVWUS programme. This allowed healthcare workers such as kaiāwhina, overseas registered health workers, and pharmacy technicians to deliver COVID-19 vaccines under supervision. This allowed us to vaccinate Aotearoa quickly and effectively, and it also brought in more Māori and Pasifika vaccinators to help their communities.

Following sector consultation at the start of 2022, we have now established a Vaccinating Health Worker (VHW) role, which will build on the success of the CVWUS role, expanding it to cover a broader range of vaccines and age groups in the future.

VHW programme

The VHW programme will be rolled out in phases. The first phase will help people who are already working as CVWUS to be authorised as a Stage 1 VHW; expanding their skills and administering more vaccines.

Vaccinators at Stage 1 are able to administer the following vaccines for COVID-19 (Pfizer), influenza, human papillomavirus, tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis. Training material for human papillomavirus, tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis will be available in the coming weeks.

To transition from a CVWUS to a VHW, you need to follow these steps.

Step 1: Authorised CVWUS need to complete the influenza module.

If you are an authorised CVWUS you can access the learning module online via your LMS account, using a specific package code included in an email that has been sent to you individually. This training module may be done online or in person in a group training setting. If the training is done in a group setting, the competency assessment at the end of the training will need to be completed individually.

Once you have successfully completed the module, you then need to complete a clinical assessment where you will need to be observed administering 3 influenza vaccines to people 12+. You can then apply for authorisation which will enable you to now administer Pfizer and Influenza to people 12+ under the clinical supervision and direction of an authorised vaccinator.

Step 2: Other stage 1 training modules

In the coming weeks training modules will be released covering administration of human papillomavirus, tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis vaccines to people 11+.  An authorised CVWUS/VHW Stage 1 will need to successfully complete these modules along with an assessment to apply for authorisation that enables you to administer these vaccines as well. This then opens the pathway to moving to Stage 2.  Details of what is included in Stage 2 will be released shortly but includes preparation of vaccines and administering vaccines including MMR, to a younger age group (5+) under the clinical supervision and direction of an authorised vaccinator.

Course for Supervisors of Vaccinating Health Workers

A learning module is available for registered health professionals with a current Annual Practicing Certificate (APC) who will provide clinical supervision for VHWs. The module is recommended but not mandatory for supervisors.

A package code is not required and the course can be accessed by logging into a LMS account.

Other helpful links and resources

Resources for CVWUS Clinical Supervisor

Applying for vaccinator authorisation

If you are in one of the following vaccinating roles, you will need to apply for authorisation with Health New Zealand:

  1. Provisional Vaccinator
  2. Provisional Pharmacist Vaccinator
  3. COVID-19 Vaccinator Working Under Supervision
  4. Vaccinating Health Worker

Our portal allows you to apply online for vaccination authorisation and review your application and its status.

By creating an account, you will be able to sign in securely to apply for authorisation, upload or access your authorisation documentation, and final authorisation letter.

Step by step instructions on how to create an account and apply for authorisation can be accessed in this guide:

Create account/Login

To create a profile to apply for authorisation, please go to the Workforce Requests web portal.

Terms of Use

Terms of Use for the Workforce Requests web portal.

Privacy notice

When you submit an application for vaccinator authorisation, we’ll collect your name, contact information, location, and documentation required for your authorisation. To use the Workforce Request web portal, you must also have a My Health Account at level 1 confidence (a verified email address).

In registering your interest, you agree to your details being reviewed by the vaccination authorisation team within Health New Zealand and used for reporting purposes. We will securely hold and manage the information you provide to us. Only you and our vaccinator authorisation team will be able to view the documents you have uploaded onto the Workforce Request web portal.

For any further questions around the Workforce Request web portal, please email va[email protected]

Contact us

Contact us if you need help with the workforce request solution. Our contact centre will be happy to help for any technical issues. If you have any question regarding your authorisation, please contact the administration team via [email protected]

Copyright

Copyright in content on the Workforce Request web portal is owned by either the Ministry of Health on behalf of the Crown or its licensors. See My Health Account copyright for more information.

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