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How do I get the second dose of the Pfizer, Moderna, or Novavax vaccine? What if I got my first shot in a different state?

Last Updated: 06/01/2023

Residents can get their second dose at any vaccination location.

The Pfizer, Moderna, and Novavax COVID-19 vaccines require two doses, several weeks apart, to be effective.

The second dose of the vaccine must be the same brand as the first. These vaccines are not interchangeable.

Johnson & Johnson's Janssen vaccine only requires a single dose. You do not need to get a second dose of the Janssen vaccine.

Note: Studies show immunity wanes over time with COVID-19 vaccines, increasing the risk of getting a breakthrough infection and spreading it to others. To protect yourself and your loved ones, get a booster shot at any vaccination location. In addition, immunocompromised individuals should get additional doses of the vaccine to help their immune system build up enough protection against COVID-19. Learn more.

Second Dose Timing

It is recommended that individuals get their second dose as close to the recommended date as possible:

  • For Pfizer: 21 days after first dose
  • For Moderna: 28 days after first dose
  • For Novavax: 3-8 weeks after first dose

However, if you missed your appointment, it is not too late. There is no known loss of efficacy of the second dose as long as someone receives the second dose within six weeks of receiving their first dose.


The State's toll-free vaccination hotline (1-855-568-0545) is available to register individuals in the NJ Vaccine Scheduling System, answer questions about the vaccine, provide contact information for sites, and check registration status.

Call center hours:

  • 9:00 a.m. Monday - Friday
  • Closed Saturday & Sunday

Source: COVID-19 Briefings;