Get a booster dose

Everyone 12+ can get a booster dose of the COVID-19 vaccine from a local pharmacy.

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Last updated: June 23, 2022

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Why you need a booster dose

You need a booster dose even if you've already had COVID-19. Post-infection immunity is temporary. If you were recently sick, book or reschedule your appointment once your symptoms have passed.

A booster dose is an additional shot of vaccine that helps you maintain and lengthen your protection against severe outcomes of COVID-19. When you get a booster dose, you help protect yourself and the people around you from COVID-19. 


Book an appointment at a pharmacy near you

Everyone 12+ can get a booster dose. You will get an invitation to book your booster appointment 6 months after your second dose. Book as soon as you are eligible.

Getting a booster is quick and easy

Once you receive your invitation, use the confirmation number to book online or by phone. If you can't find your confirmation number, phone the call centre.

Appointments are available in community pharmacies and health authority clinics all over B.C., at a time to fit your schedule.

Getting your booster only takes 15 to 30 minutes. You can go alone or as a family.

Personalized information for: 

Under the Infants Act, you can give consent as a mature minor to receive health care, like getting a booster dose. You can book for yourself or have a trusted adult make an appointment for you. Like your other appointments, you can go alone or with a trusted adult.

It's extra important to get a booster dose if you are clinically extremely vulnerable.

 

Youth who are clinically extremely vulnerable

If you are 12 to 17 and have any of the conditions listed below, it's important that you get a booster dose as soon as you are eligible.

Transplant

  • You’ve had a solid organ transplant (kidney, liver, lung, heart, pancreas)

Cancer

  • You’re having systemic therapy for cancer now or you have had it in the past 12 months. This includes chemotherapy, molecular therapy, immunotherapy, monoclonal antibodies, hormonal therapy for cancer
  • You’re having radiation therapy for cancer now or in the past 6 months
  • You’re having or had targeted cancer treatments that can affect the immune system such as CAR-T cell treatments in the past 6 months
  • You have blood or bone marrow cancer (such as leukemia, lymphoma, myeloma, myelodysplastic disorders)
  • You have had a bone marrow or stem cell transplant in the past 6 months, or are still taking immunosuppressant medicine related to your transplant

Severe respiratory conditions

  • You have cystic fibrosis 
  • You have been hospitalized because of pediatric obstructive lung diseases or similar pediatric conditions in the last three years
  • You have been hospitalized because of asthma in the last three years or you are taking biologics for asthma
  • You have severe lung disease requiring at least one of the following:
    • You require long-term home oxygen
    • You have been assessed for a lung transplant
    • You have severe pulmonary arterial hypertension or have severe pulmonary fibrosis/interstitial lung disease similar pediatric conditions

Rare blood diseases

  • You have homozygous sickle cell disease
  • You have highest risk thalassemia, meaning you have thalassemia and two of the following:
    • You are transfusion dependent
    • You are receiving iron chelation therapy
    • Your pre-transfusion hemoglobin level are less than 70 in the last 2 to 3 years
    • You have iron overload
    • You have had your spleen taken out as treatment for thalassemia or have other significant health conditions
  • You are 12+ with Atypical Hemolytic Uremia Syndrome (aHUS) or Paroxysmal Nocturnal Hemoglobinuria

Other rare diseases

  • You have a condition that means you need a metabolic (biochemical diseases) specialist and you have certain metabolically unstable inborn errors of metabolism:
    • Urea cycle defects
    • Methylmalonic aciduria
    • Propionic aciduria
    • Glutaric aciduria
    • Maple syrup urine disease
  • You have a condition known as a severe primary immunodeficiency. This means you have combined immune deficiencies affecting T-cells; familial hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis or you have type 1 interferon defects

Splenectomy

  • You have had your spleen removed or have been told you have a spleen that doesn’t function (functional asplenia)

Diabetes on insulin

  • You are currently taking insulin for diabetes (by injection or pump)

Significant developmental disabilities that increase risk

  • You have Down Syndrome
  • You have Cerebral Palsy
  • You have an intellectual/developmental disability (IDD)
  • You are using or receiving supports from:
    • Nursing Support Services program for youth 12+
    • The At Home program

Kidney/renal disease

  • You are on dialysis (hemodialysis or peritoneal dialysis)
  • You have stage 5 chronic kidney disease (your eGFR is less than 15 ml/min)
  • You have glomerulonephritis and are receiving steroid treatment

Neuromuscular/neurologic or muscular conditions that require respiratory support

  • You have significant muscle weakness around your lungs and need to use a ventilator or Bi-level positive airway pressure (Bi-PAP) continuously

People whose immune system is affected by immunosuppression therapies they take

You are taking high dose steroids or other medicines known to suppress your immune system. There are many chronic conditions that might require you to take these medications. You may be taking these for one of the conditions listed, such as a transplant, lung disease or for additional conditions such as rheumatology conditions, neurological conditions, or additional autoimmune conditions. The timing of when you last took the medication is important, so consider the timing (or dates) carefully when reviewing the list. ​
 

  • Biologics taken in the last 3 months:
    abatacept, adalimumab, anakinra, benralizumab, brodalumab, canakinumab, certolizumab, dupilumab, etanercept, golimumab, guselkumab, infliximab, interferon products (alpha, beta, and pegylated forms), ixekizumab, mepolizumab, natalizumab, ocrelizumab, ofatumumab, omalizumab, resilizumab, risankizumab, sarilumab, secukinumab, tocilizumab, ustekinumab, or vedolizumab
     
  • Biologics taken in the last 12 months:
    alemtuzumab, rituximab
     
  • Oral immune-suppressing drugs taken regularly (usually daily) in the last 3 months:
    azathioprine, baricitinib, cyclophosphamide, cyclosporine, leflunomide, dimethyl fumerate, everolimus, mycophenolate, sirolimus, tacrolimus, tofacitinib, upadacitinib, methotrexate, dexamethasone, hydrocortisone, prednisone, methylprednisolone, or teriflunomide 
     
  • Steroids orally or by injection on an ongoing basis for a chronic disease in the last 3 months:
    dexamethasone, hydrocortisone, methylprednisolone, or prednisone 
     
  • Immune-suppressing Infusions taken in the last 3 months:
    cladribine, cyclophosphamide, glatiramer, methotrexate

Pregnant people 12+ can get a booster dose 8 weeks after their second dose. You can be at any stage of your pregnancy. 

If you haven't received an invitation yet, call 1-833-838-2323 and self-identify as pregnant. We’ll book you the next available appointment. 

If you live in an independent living facility or receive long-term home support, you will get a booster dose from a health care worker who visits you. 

Seniors and people living in long-term care or assisted living will also be invited to get a second booster dose.

If you live in a rural or remote Indigenous community, you can get a booster dose in your community from your local health authority.


Understand your vaccine options

You will receive either the Moderna or Pfizer (mRNA) vaccine. It doesn't matter which vaccine you received for your first two doses.

mRNA vaccines are the best choice for a booster dose because they provide the most effective protection against COVID-19. 

If you're 18 or older and would prefer a non-mRNA vaccine, you can get the Novavax vaccine or Johnson & Johnson vaccine. Call 1-833-838-2323 to book a non-mRNA appointment.


Who can get a second booster dose

To protect people most at risk, some people can get a second booster dose. A second booster offers extra protection against severe illness.

Current eligibility

You can only get your second booster if you meet current eligibility and it's been 6 months since your first booster dose.

Seniors and Indigenous people

You will get an invitation from the Get Vaccinated system to book an appointment for your second booster if you are:

  • 70 years and older
  • 55 years and older and Indigenous

People in assisted living

You will receive your second booster from a health care worker who visits you if you are living in an assisted living facility and are:

  • 70 years and older
  • 55 years and older and Indigenous

People in long-term care

If you are living in a long-term care facility, you will receive your second booster from a health care worker who visits you.


I need help

Phone the call centre if you have questions or haven't received your invitation.

Call: 1-833-838-2323Seven days a week, 7 am to 7 pm. Translators are available.

Outside Canada and the USA: 1-604-681-4261

Telephone for the Deaf: Dial 711

Video Relay Services (VRS) sign language interpretation is free for people who are deaf, hard of hearing or speech-impaired.