Immunisation – Pharmacists

NSW: Pharmacist Vaccination 

Updated NSW Pharmacist Vaccination Standards

The NSW Pharmacist Vaccination Standards and Authority have been revised with the following key changes:

  • inclusion of meningococcal B, haemophilus influenzae type b and varicella vaccines to people aged 5 years and over;
  • removal of reference to diphtheria-tetanus-acellular pertussis combination vaccine and measles-mumps-rubella combination vaccine;
  • addition of diphtheria toxoid, tetanus toxoid, pertussis antigen, measles vaccine, mumps vaccine and rubella vaccine to enable pharmacist immuniser to administer the vaccines in varying combinations e.g. ADT and MMRV;
  • lowering of the age that pharmacist immunisers can administer vaccines protecting against diphtheria, measles, meningococcal ACWY, mumps, pertussis, rubella and tetanus to people aged 5 years and over, and administer human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine to people aged 9 years and over.

Resources on the NSW Health webpage have been updated including the vaccine eligibility table.

Which vaccines can pharmacists administer?

Access NIP vaccines: apply for a Vaccine Account Number (VAN)
  • To order NIP vaccines, pharmacies must first have a Vaccine Account Number (VAN) from the State Vaccine Centre.
  • Pharmacist immunisers are eligible to apply for a State Vaccine Centre account if they meet all the requirements in the NSW Pharmacist Vaccination Standards and the online Declaration form
  • To register for a VAN, visit State Vaccine Centre – New Pharmacy Account and follow the prompts, noting that you will need to provide your Pharmacy’s Australian Immunisation Register (AIR) provider number, principal accredited pharmacist immuniser’s AHPRA number/expiry date and confirm that all pharmacist immunisers have access to AIR to review and update vaccination records.
  • Pharmacists that do not already have a pharmacy AIR provider number must apply for AIR provider number first
  • Pharmacists that do not already have organisation and individual PRODA access, must also apply for PRODA prior to applying for a VAN
  • If you previously applied for a VAN and you have not received advice from the State Vaccine Centre, please call 1300 656 132.

National Immunisation Program (NIP) vaccines in Pharmacies

School vaccination program vaccines
HPV, dTpa and MenACWY vaccines

From 6 May 2022, appropriately trained pharmacist immunisers can supply and administer National Immunisation Program (NIP) vaccines to eligible cohorts who would be routinely offered vaccination in the NSW School Vaccination Program. These vaccines include: 

  • human papillomavirus (HPV) 
  • diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis (dTpa) 
  • meningococcal ACWY (MenACWY)

Pharmacist immunisers may also administer private market HPV, dTpa and MenACWY vaccines to people aged 20 and over who are not eligible for NIP vaccine.

More information: NSW Health factsheet 

Influenza vaccine

Commonwealth funded flu vaccine

National Immunisation Program (NIP) flu vaccines in pharmacy

  • For the first time, flu vaccine for those aged 65 years and over (Fluad Quad) will also be available from pharmacies, in addition to GP clinics. While the flu vaccine is free, pharmacies and clinics may charge an administration or consultation fee.
  • People aged 10 to 64 years can also receive flu vaccines from pharmacies, however these are not funded and must be purchased privately. Some people aged 10 to 64 years can receive a free flu vaccine from their GP clinic if they meet the NIP eligibility criteria

Who is eligible to receive a free NIP funded flu vaccine in a pharmacy?

  • Any individual aged 65 years and over and who is currently well and has not had anaphylaxis to another vaccine or medicine.
  • *Please note the vaccine is free, but you may be charged an administration fee. It is recommended that you call your pharmacy and check that they have vaccine available.

State funded flu vaccine

NSW state funded vaccines in pharmacy

  • The NSW Government will fund flu vaccinations from 1 June to 30 June 2022.
  • Free flu shots will be available at pharmacies for everyone aged 5 years and over
  • More information on CESPHN | Influenza web page

Service delivery fees

  • $25 (excl. GST) for each private flu vaccine administered to people aged  5-64 years 
  • $16 (excl. GST) for each NIP funded Fluad Quad vaccine administered to people 65 and over

Reimbursement process

NSW Health has established a reimbursement process which will utilise GuildCare NG and MedAdvisor to support the process.

  • Reimbursement via GuildCare NG:
    • NSW Health has chosen Guild Corporate Vaccination Program as one of the providers to facilitate this mass-vaccination program.
    • Pharmacies must register for the Guild Corporate Vaccination Program via the registration links for both Guild members and non-members
    • Pharmacies that use ProjectStop or participated in the Concessional RAT Scheme will already be equipped to participate in this program and will just have to register to the Corporate Vaccination Program.
    • For further information contact team on 13GUILD (13 484 53) or email
  • Reimbursement via MedAdvisor 

COVID-19 vaccine

COVID-19 license to supply by wholesale

  • The supply of Schedule 4 medications including vaccines with the intention to supply to another provider may be undertaken only by a licensed wholesaler.
  •  A special licence was put in place in regards to COVID-19 vaccines that allowed providers, including a community pharmacist, to supply COVID-19 vaccines between those providers specified in the licence. This license was established when COVID-19 vaccine supplies were constrained and when the time to expiry following thawing was very short i.e. 5 days for Comirnaty vaccine. These special licence provisions do not apply to influenza vaccines.  
  • A community pharmacist may only supply influenza vaccine to a patient dispensed on prescription or a pharmacist immuniser may supply and administer to a patient in accordance with the NSW Pharmacist Vaccination Standards. 

COVID-19 vaccine boosters in RACF

  • From 8 November 2021 until 30 June 2022, community pharmacies can claim two types of vaccination incentive payments as follows:
  • A Site Visit payment (flag fall) of $57.25 for pharmacies who visit vulnerable patients and workers to administer COVID-19 vaccinations.
  • A Residential Care Incentive payment to vaccinate workers and residents at residential aged care and residential disability care facilities. Pharmacies that provide a vaccination to 50 eligible workers (across any number of facilities) will receive a $1,000 payment

COVID-19 vaccination information 

Australian Immunisation Register (AIR)

AIR infographic resources

Application Forms

Mandatory reporting to the AIR

  • Mandatory reporting to the Australian Immunisation Register has been passed through the Australian Parliament in Feb 2020. See the Australian Immunisation Register Amendment (Reporting) Bill 2020.
  • COVID-19 vaccines, once approved for use and administered in Australia must be reported to the AIR
  • Influenza vaccinations must be reported to the AIR from 1 March 2021
  • All other NIP vaccinations must be reported from 1 July 2021

AIR reporting – Guidelines for pharmacists

  • MedAdvisor – How to record immunisations and upload to AIR
  • GuildNG – How to submit vaccination records to the AIR

See Steps to record vaccination services to AIR via GuildCareNG and MedAdvisor PlusOne

Penalties for failing to report to AIR

Failing to report to the AIR will result in civil penalty of “30 penalty units“, which equates to a fine of $6,660 according to the Crimes Act 1914. See Fines for Commonwealth offences

Immunisation Standards and Guidelines

Relevant Information

How to become a pharmacist immuniser: Accredited programs

Pharmacist eNewsletter

Random cold chain audits 

Community pharmacies may be contacted by their local Public Health Unit (PHU) to participate in cold chain reviews to support compliance with cold chain requirements.

As background, prior to the pandemic PHUs undertook cold chain reviews on a monthly basis of randomly selected immunisation providers (GPs and AMSs) as part of NSW Health quality assurance processes. Following recent discussions, PHUs are re-instating these audits in the coming months and, as community pharmacies are now receiving National Immunisation Program (NIP) vaccines, they will also be included in this process.

The review involves a short self-completed audit tool that reviews compliance with the National Vaccine Storage Guidelines ‘Strive for 5’. The PHU sends a one page self-audit tool to randomly selected providers, the provider is then requested to complete the tool and return it to the PHU with additional supporting information within 14 days of receiving it. The purpose of the audit tool is to enable providers to review their own cold chain processes and to subsequently work with the PHU/PHN to rectify any identified gaps, if required.  The ‘Strive for 5’ vaccine storage self-audit is also available to assist providers and should be completed every 12 months.  

Additional information on cold chain management is available on the NSW Health Cold Chain management webpage.