Novavax is used to prevent COVID-19 in adults and in children ages 12 years and older. The vaccine is given as an injection into the muscle of your upper arm.

The active ingredient in Novavax is NVX-CoV2373. (An active ingredient is what makes a drug work.) This article describes the dosage of Novavax, as well as its strength and how it’s given. To learn more about Novavax, see this in-depth article.

Note: In 2022, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued Novavax an emergency use authorization (EUA) During a public health crisis, such as the COVID-19 pandemic, the FDA can issue EUAs. The goal is to make urgently needed supplies available quickly. These supplies can include vaccines, drugs, and tests. The manufacturer of Novavax is conducting ongoing studies to gather additional data about the vaccine’s safety and effectiveness. When these trials conclude, the FDA will make a decision regarding the vaccine’s full approval.

This section describes the usual dosages of Novavax. Keep reading to learn more.

What is Novavax’s form?

Novavax comes as a suspension (a type of liquid mixture) that’s given as an injection into the muscle of your upper arm.

What strength does Novavax come in?

Novavax comes in one standard strength of 0.5 milliliters (mL).

What are the usual dosages of Novavax?

The information below describes dosages that are commonly used or recommended. But your doctor will determine the best dosage to fit your needs.

Dosage for COVID-19 prevention

The typical Novavax dosage for adults to prevent COVID-19 depends on whether you’ve had a COVID-19 vaccine before.

  • If you haven’t received a COVID-19 vaccine before, you’ll receive two doses of Novavax, 3 weeks apart.
  • If you’ve received a COVID-19 vaccine before, you’ll get one dose of Novavax as a booster.* You’ll need to wait at least 2 months after your last COVID-19 vaccine before receiving Novavax. (You can receive Novavax regardless of the type of COVID-19 vaccine you received originally, such as Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna.)

* A booster vaccine helps “boost” the effects of a previous vaccine that you received.

What’s the dosage of Novavax for children?

Novavax is used to help prevent COVID-19 in children ages 12 years and older.

The dosage used in children is the same as the dosage for adults. To learn more, see the “What are the usual dosages of Novavax?” section above.

For more information about Novavax’s dosage for children, talk with your child’s doctor or a pharmacist.

The number of Novavax doses you’re prescribed may depend on several factors. These include:

  • if you have a weakened immune system
  • if you’ve received other COVID-19 vaccines before
  • other health conditions you may have

Novavax comes as a suspension (a type of liquid mixture) that’s given as an injection into the muscle of your upper arm.

You’ll receive Novavax either at your doctor’s office, a clinic, or a pharmacy.

If you miss an appointment to receive a dose of Novavax, reschedule your appointment as soon as possible.

If you need help remembering your appointments, try setting an alarm or downloading a reminder app on your phone.

Below are answers to some commonly asked questions about Novavax’s dosage.

Is Novavax’s dosage similar to the dosages of other COVID-19 vaccines?

The forms and how often you receive each COVID-19 vaccine are similar. The Novavax, Moderna, and Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines are all given as an injection into the muscle of your upper arm.

The dose in milliliters for each vaccine differs. Your doctor will recommend the vaccine and the dosage that’s right for you.

To learn more about how these vaccines compare, talk with your doctor.

How long does it take for Novavax to start working?

Novavax typically starts to be effective 7 days after your second dose (if receiving two doses) or 7 days after a single booster dose.* Novavax isn’t effective right away because it takes time for your immune system to build antibodies after you receive the vaccine.

If you have other questions about what to expect from the Novavax injection, talk with your doctor.

* A booster vaccine helps “boost” the effects of a previous vaccine that you received.

The sections above describe the usual dosage provided by the manufacturer. If your doctor recommends Novavax for you, they’ll prescribe the dosage that’s right for you.

Here are some examples of questions you may want to ask your doctor:

  • Is the risk of side effects with Novavax higher if I receive two doses rather than one?
  • Based on my health conditions, will I need an additional dose of Novavax?
  • How can I minimize any pain or other side effects from the injection?

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Disclaimer: Healthline has made every effort to make certain that all information is factually correct, comprehensive, and up to date. However, this article should not be used as a substitute for the knowledge and expertise of a licensed healthcare professional. You should always consult your doctor or another healthcare professional before taking any medication. The drug information contained herein is subject to change and is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. The absence of warnings or other information for a given drug does not indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective, or appropriate for all patients or all specific uses.