Hepatitis A vaccine

The hepatitis A vaccine helps to protect you against the hepatitis A virus, which is spread by infected faeces. Hepatitis A vaccine side effects are uncommon and usually mild, such as headache and fever. Hepatitis A can become serious if you are infected, but the vaccine can help you avoid this, and protection lasts 25 years.

01.How long does the hepatitis A vaccine last

The hepatitis A vaccine lasts 25 years. A full course includes two doses, which you must get a minimum of 182 days apart.

However, you can travel and be protected after just one dose.

You can get the hepatitis A vaccine anytime before you travel.

02.Side effects of the hepatitis A vaccine

Like all medicines and vaccines, the hepatitis A vaccine can cause side effects, but most people do not experience any at all.

If you do experience hepatitis A vaccine side effects, they are very unlikely to be serious.

Possible hepatitis A vaccine side effects include:

  • temporary soreness where you had the injection

  • a small, painless lump where you had the injection

  • slight fever

  • feeling unwell

  • tiredness

  • headache

  • feeling sick

  • loss of appetite

If your hepatitis A vaccine side effects do not improve, or become worse,  you should talk to your doctor.

03.Who should get the hepatitis A vaccine

Generally, everyone travelling to a destination where there is a high risk of being infected with hepatitis A should check if they need the hepatitis A vaccine.

Especially gay men, drug users, people who are in close contact with an infected person, people who may be exposed to the disease when at work, such as doctors, and people with any type of long-term liver disease, are recommended to check if they need the hepatitis A vaccine.

But even though the hepatitis A injection is given to the majority of people who need prevention against the disease, it can cause problems for some. This includes people who:

  • are allergic to any of the ingredients of the vaccine

  • are currently unwell with a fever

  • have a reduced immune system, for example from HIV

  • have blood problems, like easy bruising or bleeding

  • are on dialysis for a kidney problem

  • already have hepatitis A or are in contact with it

  • are pregnant or breastfeeding

  • are planning to have a baby

If you belong to any of these groups or you are unsure whether you should get the hepatitis A vaccine, you can book a free phone consultation with one of our prescribing nurses for a personal assessment.

04.Cost of the hepatitis A vaccine

If there is a  risk of hepatitis A at your destination, it is recommended that you check whether you need the vaccine, as the disease can be fatal. For the cost of the hepatitis A vaccine, see below.

Per Dose
$0 per dose
Consultation
Free
Related diseases
Content reviewed by

Anne Marie Major, Independent Nurse Prescriber
June 25, 2019