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This post is not the latest immunisation update and therefore may contain information or advice that is out of date. Please see our most recent update here.

Immunisation weekly update – 10 February 2021

10 February 2021

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Mandatory reporting to the Australian Immunisation Register has been passed through the Australian Parliament

Mandatory reporting to the Australian Immunisation Register is now required. 

Any 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 and all other NIP vaccinations must be reported from 1 July 2021​.

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. Providers may be liable for civil penalty after being given written notice by the Secretary. Click here to read the Australian Immunisation Register Amendment (Reporting) Bill 2020.

Visit the AIR|PRODA section of the CESPHN Immunisation Resources page for support or please contact your Digital Health, Practice Support or Immunisation Program Officer directly for assistance, or contact 1300 986 991 to be connected to the relevant person.

Online COVID-19 Vaccination Training Program now available

The first Australian Government funded training modules for the COVID-19 vaccination workforce, including for immunisation providers and non-clinical and administration staff, is now available.​​ 

The Australian government COVID-19 vaccination program is likely to begin late February 2021. The Department of Health is developing a range of resources to keep healthcare professionals up to date with the latest information.

The NCIRS website has a dedicated web page that provides links to relevant resources. They will be updating the page as new resources and information become available. 

Access the NCIRS COVID-19 vaccination program in Australia summary page here.

New Department of Health COVID-19 Vaccine website launches

The Department of Health has developed a new COVID-19 vaccines website so people can stay informed. This website is being updated regularly with more information as it becomes available. Information will also be available in 63 languages.

TGA COVID-19 Vaccine Resource Hub

The Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) has developed a dedicated COVID-19 vaccines resource page. 

This page will be regularly updated to keep consumers, health professionals and sponsors informed of the latest developments. This page also includes new advice that there is no specific risk of vaccination with the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine in elderly patients.

NCIRS COVID-19 Vaccine FAQ page

NCIRS have developed a new COVID-19 related web page that answers some of the most frequently asked questions about COVID-19 vaccines. They update this page regularly.

Updated screening tool for  contraindications to vaccination with Zostavax

The updated screening tool for contraindications to vaccination with Zostavax  is now available on the Australian Immunisation Handbook website. Please note the online location of this tool has changed from where it was before, so update your link to the new location. 

Associated reading:

TGA safety advisory on Zostavax vaccine

Upcoming NCIRS webinars – Out of the starting blocks: COVID-19 vaccination program in Australia – Parts 1 & 2

Hosted in partnership with the Australasian Society for Infectious Diseases Vaccination Special Interest Group, the NCRIS are hosting two exclusive webinars in preparation for the roll out of COVID-19 vaccines in Australia.

1. Out of the starting blocks: COVID-19 vaccination program in Australia  – Part 1

  • Date: Friday 12 February 2021 
  • Time: 12.30 pm – 2:00 pm AEDT
  • Find out more about the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine from Dr William C. Gruber, Senior Vice President of Pfizer Vaccine Clinical Research and Development 
  • Prepare for the roll out of COVID-19 vaccines with information from Australia’s leading health authorities
  • Click here to register

2. Out of the starting blocks: COVID-19 vaccination program in Australia  – Part 2

  • Date: Friday 19 February 2021 
  • Time: 7:00 pm – 8:00 pm AEDT
  • Hear an overview of and update on the Oxford Vaccine Group-Astra Zeneca ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 vaccine from Professor Andrew Pollard, Professor of Paediatric Infection and Immunity, Oxford Vaccine Group, University of Oxford 
  • Build on understanding of the roll out of COVID-19 vaccines with information from Australia’s leading health authorities
  • Click here to register