Covid-19 booster shots will soon be a requirement for all over-18s to access France’s Health Pass (Pass Sanitaire). Find out if you need a Covid vaccine booster in France, when you need to have it by, and how to book an appointment.
Covid-19 Vaccine Boosters in France
France began offering Covid booster shots back in September for healthcare workers, over 65s, and those at high-risk. On November 9th, President Macron announced that from December 15th, all over-65s will need a Covid booster shot in order to access France’s Health Pass. Just last week, it was announced that over-18s will also be required to get a booster shot in order to maintain access to the pass.
The health pass is required for access to public events and buildings, including (but not limited to) bars, restaurants, museums, gyms, and long-distance public transport.
Who is eligible for a booster shot in France?
As of November 27th, booster shots are now available to all over 18s in France.
You will be eligible for a booster five months after the date of your last vaccination (note: this has been reduced from the previous timeframe of six months).
When do I need to get my booster shot?
From December 15th (if you are over 65) or January 15th (if you are over 18), a booster shot will be required in order to maintain access to France’s Health Pass. Essentially, from these dates, ‘fully vaccinated’ will mean ‘three vaccination shots’ or two vaccinations for those who previously recovered from Covid (i.e. 1 x original vaccine shot + a booster).
You will become eligible for your dose within five months of your last vaccination and you will have two months to receive your booster before your pass is deactivated. If you have not received a booster shot within seven months of your final vaccination your Health Pass will be deactivated.
If you use France’s TousAntiCovid app, you will receive an alert telling you when you are eligible for a booster jab. However, it’s a good idea to check the date yourself rather than relying on this. It remains your responsibility to book your booster and also to scan the QR code into the app once you have received it.
What happens if I don’t get a booster?
If the seven months pass and you have not presented a booster vaccination certificate, your Health Pass will automatically be deactivated. In order to reinstate it, you will need to receive the booster vaccine.
You will also be able to activate the Health Pass by presenting a negative Covid test taken less than 24 hours before. Taking a ‘convenience’ test for this purpose is no longer free for French residents (or travellers), but this remains an option for those who missed the deadline and still want to use the pass prior to receiving their booster.
How to Make an Appointment for a Covid-19 Vaccine Booster in France
You will be eligible for a booster five months after the date of your last vaccination. However, you can book an appointment prior to this date, providing that the date of the appointment is after the five month mark.
The easiest way to book an appointment for your booster shot is online via a medical app such as Doctolib. You can also make an appointment via your GP or family doctor, or directly at one of the Covid vaccination centres (search for your closest one here).
With such a large number of the population soon eligible for a booster, it is expected that many vaccination centres will reopen and more appointments will become available, so keep checking if there are no spaces available when you first look.
Remember to take your Carte Vitale with you when booking or attending your appointment. You will also need to enter the date of your last vaccination (found on your vaccination certificate, or in ‘mon carnet’ in your TousAntiCovid app).
Booster shots are covered by your Carte Vitale – as long as you are registered for France’s state healthcare, you will not have to pay.
Can I get my Covid-19 booster and my flu shot at the same time?
France’s medical regulator (HAS) has given approval for combined appointments where the Covid vaccine and flu shot can be administered at the same time. So, if you have not yet received your flu shot, this might be a convenient option to save time.
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