Alberta Health Services
People with liver problems and people who are at risk for contact with the hepatitis A virus can get this vaccine.
Ask a public health nurse to find out if you can get the HAV vaccine for free. You may need a blood test to check if you’re already protected.
The vaccine may be recommended for you if you travel to an area that has a high risk of hepatitis A. If you get the vaccine because of travel, it’s not free. Learn more about vaccines for travel.
If you can’t get the vaccine for free, check with your health insurance provider to see if your plan covers the cost.
You may not be able to get this vaccine if:
If you have allergies or have had a side effect from this vaccine in the past, check with your doctor or a public health nurse before you get the vaccine.
Although you can get the vaccine if you have a mild illness such as a cold or fever, you should stay home until you are feeling better to prevent spreading your illness to others.
Most people need 2 doses at least 6 months apart.
There are 2 other vaccines that protect against hepatitis A:
If you’ve already had these vaccines, you may not need the HAV vaccine. Check with your healthcare provider to find out if you need more doses.
If you can get this vaccine for free, contact your local public health or community health centre.
If you want the vaccine and need to pay for it, contact a travel health clinic or talk to your doctor or pharmacist.
If you’re immunized before you have contact with the hepatitis A virus, the protection is 95% to 100%.
If you get this vaccine within 1 week after contact with hepatitis A virus, the protection is about 80%.
Vaccine safety is a top priority. Canada uses extremely safe vaccines. Learn more about vaccine safety in Canada, including how vaccines are monitored for continued safety, and ingredients in vaccines.
There can be side effects from the HAV vaccine, but they tend to be mild and go away in a few days. Side effects may include:
At least 1 out of 100 people who got this vaccine reported 1 or more of these side effects. In some cases, it is unknown if the vaccine caused these side effects.
It’s important to stay at the clinic for 15 minutes after your vaccine. Some people may have a rare but serious allergic reaction called anaphylaxis. If anaphylaxis happens, you will get medicine to treat the symptoms.
It’s rare to have a serious side effect. Call Health Link at 811 to report any serious or unusual side effects.
There can be mild, short-term side effects after getting a vaccine. Find tips to manage these side effects at home.