Guide: Immunodeficiency, Autoimmunity and COVID-19 Vaccination

14 April 2021:   

This Guide has been developed by ASCIA, based on current knowledge regarding immunodeficiency, autoimmunity and COVID-19 vaccines, and is updated when new information is available.

pdfASCIA HP Guide Immunodeficiency Autoimmunity COVID-19 Vaccination 2021-04-1452.29 KB

COVID-19 vaccines listed below are not live-attenuated vaccines and are safe for people with immune system disorders, including immunodeficiency and autoimmune conditions.

Pfizer/BioNTech COMIRNATY COVID-19 vaccine (mRNA-based) has been provisionally approved by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA), part of the Australian Government Department of Health, and by Medsafe in New Zealand for people 16 years and older.

AstraZeneca/Oxford COVID-19 vaccine (viral vector) has been provisionally approved by the TGA for people 18 years and older. A statement from the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI) about safety concerns is available at 

Biocelect/Novavax COVID-19 vaccine (protein subunit) has been granted provisional determination by the TGA. This vaccine is not yet available in Australia.

COVID-19 vaccines have initially been tested in healthy adults, before being tested on more vulnerable people, to provide confidence that the vaccine is safe for use in the general population.

There is no evidence that people with primary or secondary immunodeficiencies and autoimmune conditions are at any greater risk of vaccine allergy than the general population.

Treatments for immunodeficiencies and autoimmune conditions should not be stopped.

COVID-19 vaccine side effects indicate the start of an immune response, not an allergic reaction.

For more information refer to the ASCIA website:

© ASCIA 2021

ASCIA is the peak professional body of clinical immunology/allergy specialists in Australia and New Zealand.