ATAGI has reviewed the latest evidence regarding the use of bivalent COVID-19 vaccines. It is now recommended that individuals aged 12 years and over receive bivalent vaccines for primary vaccination and booster doses in preference over using the original/ancestral strain vaccines. Whilst safety and immunogenicity data for bivalent vaccines in a primary series is limited, the safety profile when used as a booster dose is similar to when original/ancestral vaccines are used.   

  • Individuals aged 12-17 years are recommended to receive BA.4/5-containing bivalent vaccines for primary vaccination and booster doses. 
  • Individuals aged 18 years and over can receive either BA.1-containing or BA.4/5-containing vaccines for primary vaccination and booster doses. 
  • Individuals aged 12 and over who have commenced their primary course with an original (ancestral) vaccine are recommended to complete the course with a bivalent vaccine.
  • There are no bivalent vaccines currently available for use in children aged 6 months-11 years and therefore original/ancestral strain vaccines should continue to be used (noting that booster doses are not recommended for anyone under 5 years of age).

There are no changes to who is recommended to receive booster doses. Schedules and intervals between doses also remain unchanged.

ATAGI advice on the preferential use of bivalent COVID-19 vaccines for primary vaccination of people aged 12 years or older