Vaccines received abroad by frontier workers now recognized

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The government has announced that three Covid-19 vaccines commonly administered abroad are now recognized by the Vaccinations Order which requires people working at New Zealand’s borders to be fully vaccinated.

The AstraZeneca vaccine is one of three now recognized by the Decree on vaccinations.
Photo: Roland Magnusson / TBEN

It follows a change in legislation in response to the need to recognize other vaccines beyond the Pfizer vaccine – the only Covid-19 vaccine currently available in New Zealand. It took effect at 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, October 17.

In a statement released this afternoon, the health ministry said the move would help support employers and keep the community safe.

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“This decision will help employers allow workers who have completed their course with Moderna, AstraZeneca, Janssen or Pfizer vaccines abroad to work at or around the border,” Fiona Michel, Acting National Director of Covid-19 vaccine and vaccination operations. Program, said.

“It will also support some employers when recruiting people to work at or near the border, especially for specialized roles.

“In the previous version of the Immunization Ordinance, their vaccination status was not recognized. But these are all vaccines that are either provisionally approved by Medsafe or by a trusted regulatory body.”

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To meet the requirements of the Amended Vaccination Ordinance, a border worker who has received a single dose of Pfizer, Moderna or AstraZeneca two-dose vaccines overseas will need to receive an additional single dose of Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine.

A border worker who has been vaccinated with the Janssen vaccine abroad will not need another dose of the Pfizer vaccine.

The amendment also allows for the authorization of a border worker partially vaccinated with Pfizer, Moderna or AstraZeneca vaccines, or a border worker partially vaccinated with another vaccine not named above, to continue working at the border s ‘he is convinced that the vaccine received by the worker abroad will prevent or adequately limit the risk of an epidemic or spread of Covid-19.

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“The amendment updates the decree on vaccinations so that it is consistent with clinical advice on alternatives to the Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine,” Michel said.

“When the original vaccination order was drafted, the Pfizer vaccine was the only COVID-19 vaccine provisionally approved by Medsafe. The change aligns the order with Medsafe’s provisional approval of two of these other vaccines.”

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