Update 2021-07-13: All adult residents of Taiwan now eligible to sign up to the vaccine waitlist. You’ll get a text when you can make an appointment.
Update 2021-07-06: Free PCR tests now available in Taipei (previously ~$270 USD) [Focus Taiwan].
Today (Monday July 5, 2021), I got my second shot of the AstraZeneca vaccine at NTUH. If you got your first shot through the “self paid” vaccination program, you should be eligible to make an appointment for your second shot.
I am happy to report that my second shot was administered at a genuine mass vaccination site, not just a single clinic in a side hallway. Taiwan’s vaccination program has finally scaled up. Doses are arriving by the millions, and just last Friday Taiwan administered a record 184,393 jabs in a single day! (For comparison, more people were vaccinated on last Friday alone than the total number of people in Taiwan that had so-far received a shot when I got my first dose in late April).
My recommended arrival time was 9:05-9:20 AM. I arrived at the NTU Hospital Convention Center at 8:55 AM, handed over my health insurance card and got a ticket with my line number. Most of the line is in shaded outdoor areas. The actual paperwork and vaccinations are done in a big gymnasium. Perhaps because I was getting my second shot, my line was much shorter than the others. By 9:06 I was filling out a short form (date of my previous shot, known allergies, etc), getting my temperature taken and handing over my vaccination card.
After all that, I was directed to sit in a line of (appropriately spaced) chairs with four other people and a nurse with a cart came by and vaccinated us one-by-one and handed us our completed vaccination cards. After a fifteen minute wait, I was good to go. I walked out the door by 9:41 (less than one hour total).
There was no additional fee (besides the 600 NTD I paid for my first shot). The only documents I needed (for this second shot) were my NHI card and my vaccination card. I don’t believe they checked my ARC (ID card). The requirements may vary based on where you get vaccinated, whether you got your first shot at that same location, and if you’re on the priority list or getting a self-paid vaccine.
How to get there
NTUH Vaccination Site:
NTUH International Convention Center
No. 2, Xuzhou Road, Zhongzheng District, Taipei City, 100
Getting the appointment
I got my first dose at NTUH on April 26. At that time, they gave me an appointment for my second shot 8 weeks later (6/21). Some people who went to other clinics were just told to make an appointment when their second shot came due.
With the Taiwan’s first outbreak of community transmission in May, the self-paid vaccination program was cancelled, and I heard many reports that appointments for the second shot of the self-paid vaccines were getting cancelled as well. My appointment remained live until June 14, when I got a text message from NTUH:
Translation (lightly edited Google Translate):
The National Taiwan University Hospital informs you that the second dose of the coronavirus vaccine was originally reserved for you. Due to government changes, the second dose can only be administered 10-12 weeks after the first dose. The appointment on the same day is invalid. Please do not come to the hospital. Please pay attention to relevant announcements for follow-up procedures. National Taiwan University Hospital cares about you!
On June 21, I received another text message stating the online appointments would open on June 23, but that the appointment must be for at least 10 weeks after your first shot.
Translation (lightly edited Google Translate):
National Taiwan University Hospital informs you that if you have not received the second dose of AZ vaccine, please make an appointment online from 6/23. The Central Epidemic Command Center must adjust the time for the second dose of AZ vaccination to be 10-12 weeks apart from the first dose. Therefore, please note that the appointment date must meet the central regulations. National Taiwan University Hospital cares about you!
Finally, when June 23 actually rolled around, they made an appointment for me and informed me by text message.
The National Taiwan University Hospital informs you that because the government stipulates that the second dose of AZ vaccine must be 10-12 weeks apart from the first dose, it has made an appointment for you to receive the second dose of AZ vaccine at clinic 74, number 28 on the morning of July 5th. The recommended report time is 09:05-09:20, Venue: National Taiwan University Hospital International Conference Center (No. 2 Xuzhou Road), please bring your ID card, health insurance card and ballpoint pen. If you cannot come to the hospital at this time, please go to the hospital’s online registration system to cancel. National Taiwan University Hospital cares about you!
I showed up on that time and date and everything went quite smoothly!
How to make an appointment
If you have already received your first shot under the now-cancelled self-paid vaccination program (if you used my first guide), you should be able to get your second shot. Crucially, according to my friend’s reading of the text from NTUH, your second appointment must be 10-12 weeks after your first shot (even if there are earlier appointments available).
If you went to NTUH, they should have made an appointment for you, so check your text messages for something you might have missed (I received messages from +886 911-510-323). Alternatively, you can check their website to see if you have an appointment. You can use the English appointment check page.
If you got your first shot at another hospital, I recommend you contact them directly. At least one friend of mine was able to get an appointment at NTUH after getting her first shot somewhere else, but they haven’t gotten the vaccine yet, so I can’t vouch for this plan. You can try to make an appointment using the NTUH online interface, but as far as I can tell, the page to book a second dose is available only in Chinese. I recommend using chrome on laptop and having your phone handy to translate anything that chrome doesn’t.
- My first post about how to use the self-paid vaccine program
- My update about the cancellation of the self-paid program
If you have questions or tips for me, don’t hesitate to reach out!
One more note: I definitely think you should get the vaccine, but I’m not that kind of doctor, and absolutely nothing here should be taken as medical advice.