Older children and teenagers

At 11 years old your tamariki will be offered a free tetanus, diphtheria, whooping cough immunisation. Between 9 and 13 they will be offered free HPV immunisation. They can also get immunised against illnesses like meningococcal disease, flu, and COVID-19.

Immunisations on the schedule are free for children under 18

In Aotearoa New Zealand, we have a National Immunisation Schedule. This lists the vaccines offered to tamariki and adults and the best time to get immunised. All vaccinations on the National Immunisation Schedule are free for children under 18 – it does not matter what their visa or citizenship status is. This includes visitors to Aotearoa New Zealand.

Extra vaccines not on the schedule may also be recommended if you, or your child, is considered high-risk, or if you’re travelling abroad. Some of these vaccines you may need to pay for.

National Immunisation Schedule

When to immunise

From 9 and 11 years old

Public Health teams visit participating schools, usually in Year 7 or Year 8, to provide these immunisations.

Information about the immunisations and consent forms are provided by the school for the parent or caregiver to sign.

If your school is not offering immunisations, or your child has missed out for any reason, you can take them to your doctor, nurse, or healthcare provider for their vaccinations. 

HPV immunisation

Although HPV immunisation is provided through most participating schools in Year 7 or Year 8 it is free for everyone aged 9 to 26 years, including non-residents under 18 years old.

  • Tamariki aged 9 to 14 years old need 2 doses. The second dose is given at least 6 months after the first dose.
  • Rangatahi (young people) from age 15 years old need 3 doses. These are given over 6 months.

HPV immunisation

Other immunisations for this age group

To provide the best protection for your tamariki, make sure they’re also up to date with the following immunisations.

  • Measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) – if your child has not already received 2 doses
  • COVID-19ages 12 years old and over are eligible for 2 doses, and ages 16 and over are eligible for 2 doses and a booster
  • Annual flu vaccine – recommended for everyone over 6 months old. Free for children under 12 years old, and older children with certain health conditions
  • Meningococcalfree for rangatahi (young people) aged 13 to 25 in close-living situations (like boarding schools or tertiary hostels and halls of residence).

Booking a vaccination appointment

Teenagers Abi and Jayden talk about meningococcal immunisation

[Abbie] My name is Abbie, I'm 18 years old and next year I'm going to be heading off to the University of Canterbury and I'm doing a Bachelor of Science where I'm going to major in medicinal chemistry.

[Jayden] My name is Jayden and I'm 17 years old. I'm heading up to the University of Auckland next year to study engineering. Just last week I got the meningococcal vaccine to protect myself.

My medical centre emailed advertising about it that it was government funded, so I decided to get it.

The email advertised it as a good protection for staying in a hall of residence where there's so many people in a confined space.

[Abi] I had the meningococcal vaccine early last week I learned that meningitis can actually be quite dangerous and can come really bad, really quickly. [Jayden] It didn't hurt at all I just got the vaccine a sore arm for a couple days but that's just the normal.

[Abi] I've got all my childhood vaccines from very young to now so for me this is just another vaccine I need to get to protect me against another disease.

If a vaccination has been missed – it’s easy to catch up

If your child has missed a vaccination, it’s OK. Rangatahi (young people) can catch up on most vaccinations. If your child has missed a school vaccination, contact your school to see if there is a catch-up vaccination day.

It’s particularly important for rangatahi to be up to date with 2 doses of the measles vaccine.

For advice, talk to your doctor, nurse, pharmacist, or trusted healthcare provider.

Catching up on missed immunisations

Extra vaccines for rangatahi

Extra free immunisations are available for those at high-risk, and some vaccines can also be purchased for extra protection and for overseas travel.

Extra vaccines for tamariki and whānau