for Veterans and the Public
What is the hepatitis A vaccine? - Hepatitis A for Patients
The hepatitis A vaccine is a dose of inactive virus that stimulates your natural immune system. After the hepatitis A vaccine is given, your body makes antibodies that will protect you against the hepatitis A virus.
Vaccination for hepatitis A requires 2 shots, 6 months apart. The vaccine is given with an injection, into the muscle of the upper arm. If for some reason the second injection doesn't take place at 6 months, you can receive the second dose at a later time.
If you need hepatitis B vaccination in addition to hepatitis A, you can do these individually or as a combined vaccine that covers both. The combination vaccine is given as 3 injections over a 6-month period--an initial dose, followed by a second dose 1 month later, and then a third dose 5 months after the second.