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The Vaccinating Health Worker Stage 1 COVID-19 and influenza vaccines course is designed for individuals who wish to become an authorised Vaccinating Health Worker (VHW) Stage 1. which will allow you to administer COVID-19 and influenza vaccines to people aged 12 years and above. Prior to starting this course, you would have completed the VHW Stage 1 Course.  

On completion of the online part of this course, you must also attend the following training, which is organised by your employer.

  1. CPR course (Basic Life Support)  
  2. IMAC VHW Stage 1 practical workshop – to practice injection technique and other important skills
  3. CIR training.

It is strongly recommended that you have completed the CPR course before attending the IMAC practical workshop. You will also be required to complete the CIR training. This is a compulsory course that needs to be completed with this course. You may also need to complete the Enter influenza immunisation records into the CIR v2 course.

Authorised VHW Stage 1 will be able to:

  • Check consumer details
  • Follow the agreed prompt card questions, calling for support when any issues are identified
  • Check consent has been obtained
  • Administer vaccines completed in online training: Flu and Comirnaty vaccines to consumers aged 12 years and over and/or Tdap and HPV9 vaccines to consumers aged 11 years and over
  • Observe consumers while waiting after the vaccination
  • Provide post vaccination advice
  • Always work under supervision of a registered health professional.

Course access and entry requirements

Entry to the online course is via employer nomination. Interested individuals need to contact their employer, who will apply on their behalf. However, first you must have the appropriate pre-requisites.


You have been approved to do this training by your employer, and your occupation is one of the following:

  • Healthcare assistant
  • Kaiāwhina
  • Kaiarahi
  • Kaimanaaki
  • Pharmacy technician
  • NZ trained healthcare professionals with a expired practising certificate
  • Overseas-trained healthcare professionals without a valid NZ practising certificate Healthcare professional trained overseas

Employer makes application

If employer agrees and you have the pre-requisites, the employer will need to apply on your behalf.

1.      Employers must contact on of their local IMAC education team (see contacts below) to obtain a registration form. The completed registration form is then submitted to IMAC.

2.     Approved VHWs then receive 'package codes' from IMAC so they can add the course to their  IMAC Learning Management System (LMS). This ensures they can access the VHW Stage 1 and VHW Stage 1 vaccine specific online courses.

Please find contacts for more information at the bottom of the page.

VHW Stage 1 training pathway

A high-level illustration of the training pathway is shown below. The first two phases are IMAC-led. The last three phases are employer-led.

In addition to the IMAC VHW training, the VHWs must also complete other core training outlined in the VHW Capability Matrix. The employer is responsible for providing access to courses and support for course completion.

 Training pathway for new entrants

There are three VHW Stage 1 online courses. Completion of the first introduction course is compulsory before starting the vaccine-specific courses. Each course has a multi choice-style assessment and the pass mark is 80%.

It is not compulsory to complete both vaccine-specific courses unless:

  • The VHW will be administering other vaccines not covered in their first vaccine-specific course and/or
  • The VHW intends to apply for VHW Stage 2 training.

Training pathway for currently authorised CVWUS and/or authorised VHW Stage 1 – Influenza Vaccine

The table below outlines the training requirements for those transitioning into the VHW Stage 1 pathway.

This applies to people who hold a current CVWUS authorisation and want to be authorised for other VHW Stage 1 vaccines and/or wanting to progress onto VHW Stage 2 training.

The IMAC practical assessment can be done via zoom or in-person for people who are authorised CVWUS or authorised VHW to administer influenza vaccines.

Training phase requirements

Phases 1 and 2: Vaccinating Health Worker (VHW) Online Courses

As the employer is responsible for ensuring the VHW completes training phases 3, 4 and 5, it is essential the VHW is registered on the relevant vaccine-specific course i.e. the vaccines they will be administering at the workplace.

IMAC practical workshop (3-3.5 hours)

On successfully completing the online courses, the VHW will then attend a practical workshop. On successful completion of the workshop, a workbook is issued to guide learning at the workplace. The workbook also includes a series of knowledge checks, activities, and observation tasks.


Phases 3 and 4

Practical assessment at the workplace and authorisation application to Te Whatu Ora

This is the formal assessment of the VHW knowledge and skills. The assessment is performed under a Standing Order by an authorised vaccinator with at least 2-years’ experience.

Upon completing all the training requirements for VHW Stage 1, an application is then submitted to Te Whatu Ora. If the application is accepted, Te Whatu Ora will then issue a vaccine-specific authorisation letter. The authorisation is valid for 2 years.

If the authorised stage 1 VHW wishes to extend their authorisation to other Stage 1 vaccines, they will need to complete requirements in Phase 5 (seebelow) and then apply for to Te Whatu Ora to extend their authorisation via theAuthorisation Portal.


Phase 5

Competency assessment at the workplace to extend authorisation scope.

This is only required if the authorised Stage 1 VHW is required to administer other Stage 1 VHW vaccines that were not administered during their practical assessment. Competency assessments are completed with the workplace clinical supervisor.

Details of this are included in the VHW Stage 1 Workbook, which is provided aftersuccessful completion of the IMAC practical workshop.

IMAC course content

This course will provide theory on:

  1. COVID-19 and influenza diseases
  2. COVID-19 and influenza vaccine eligibility and administration


At the end of the theory lesson, you will complete a multiple choice assessment.

  • There are 10 questions, and you must get 8 correct to pass.
  • If you don't pass the first time, you can try two more times.
  • If you don't pass after the third try, please email us using this link. 


After completing the assessment we'd really appreciate it if you can give us some feedback. This helps us improve the course for others.

Employer responsibilities

1.       Provide the training indicated as employer-led in the VHW Capability Matrix such as Te Tiriti o Waitangi, Health Information Privacy Code and working with people with disabilities.

2.       Organise other employment requirements such as police vetting, requirements under the Vulnerable Children’s Act, occupational health screening and indemnity insurance.

Applying for VHW Authorisation

To apply,please send your application to Te Whatu Ora Vaccinator Authorisation Portal (click here). If you have any questions aboutyour authorisation application or how to use the portal, email

Te Whatu Ora will assess applications and issuethe authorisation letter. The authorised Stage 2 VHW can then administerapproved vaccines under the direction and supervision of a registeredhealthcare professional without a Standing Order.

Authorisationis valid for 2 years from the issue date.

For more information

Te Whatu Ora VHW Capability Matrix (version 2, 12 August 2022)

Te Whatu Ora VHW Information Sheets for Employers, Clinical Supervisors and VHWs.

Contacts for registration and training support  

For general course registration questions, please email:

For other training and onboarding support questions, please email the local IMAC clinical staff.

Northern Region

Sandra Prinsloo, Immunisation Education Facilitator

Midlands Region

Chantel Punter, Immunisation Education Facilitator

Central Region

Diane McIrvine, Immunisation Education Facilitator

Southern Region

Karen Cague, Immunisation Education Facilitator

For questions on the authorisation process, please email: