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IMPORTANT NOTICE

This post is not the latest immunisation update and therefore may contain information or advice that is out of date.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 – 29 September 2021

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Immunisation Weekly Update

Catch up on previous Immunisation Weekly Updates on our Immunisation New & Alerts webpage.

 Vaccine Clinic Finder replaces the Vaccine Eligibility Checker

The Vaccine Clinic Finder has replaced the Vaccine Eligibility checker to make it easier for individuals to find a clinic to access COVID-19 vaccinations. All people aged 12 years and over are now eligible to receive free COVID-19 vaccinations.

How to get proof of your COVID-19 vaccination – flyers and posters available

Services Australia has a range of resource available to support employees and the community get proof of their COVID-19 vaccinations. There are also specific resources for Indigenous and Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Communities. Visit the Services Australia website for further information and to view the resources available. Order free printed resources by either emailing  publications.production@servicesaustralia.gov.au or calling 1800 067 307

Additional doses of COVID-19 vaccines

ATAGI strongly recommends maximising first and second dose vaccine uptake across the community. At this time, the TGA has not yet received a registration application for the administration of additional doses of any COVID-19 vaccines. Additional doses can be defined as:

  • Third doses: Additional COVID-19 doses required as part of the primary course to reach a comparable (optimal) level of protection
  • Booster dose: Additional COVID-19 doses required at a broader population level, to optimise protection due to waning of immunity (loss of protection) over time, with booster doses also leading to improved immune memory.

ATAGI has released a statement in relation to additional doses of COVID-19 vaccine and is expecting to provide preliminary advice on the need and timing of additional doses in the broader population by the end of October.

AusVaxSafety launches new-look COVID-19 vaccine safety data webpages

COVID-19 active vaccine safety surveillance data have been updated on the AusVaxSafety website to enhance readability and user experience. The new data display now showcases dose 1 and dose 2 COVID-19 vaccine safety data side-by-side, and allows users to filter by population group and vaccine brand/type most relevant to them.

This data provides individuals with a short-term adverse event profile of what to expect in the days following COVID-19 vaccination and are a great resource to assist immunisation providers when counselling patients or answering questions regarding COVID-19 vaccination.

Closure of AIR authentication files – 30 September 2021

Authentication file access to the Australian Immunisation Register (AIR) will close on 30 September 2021 for all providers. A Provider Digital Access (PRODA) account is required to access the AIR via the Health Professionals Online Services (HPOS) portal.  To set up AIR access:

Health professionals with a Medicare provider number

Medical practices with an AIR provider number

For assistance call the AIR Internet Helpdesk on 1300 650 039 Monday to Friday, 8 am to 5 pm local time.

COVID-19 in under 12’s

Under-12s are increasingly catching COVID-19. How sick are they getting and when will we be able to vaccinate them? The article is available on the NCIRS website, written by Associate Professor Nick Wood and originally published by The Conversation, discusses whether children need to be vaccinated, the benefits and how we will know the vaccines are safe and effective for young children.

COVID-19 Exposure

NSW Health is currently responding to a number of COVID-19 outbreaks all across NSW. Healthcare workers are at high risk of exposure to COVID-19. To assist healthcare facilities to assess staff who have been exposed to COVID-19, refer to the Health Care Worker COVID-19 Risk Assessment Matrix.

Medical clearance notice after recovery from COVID-19

NSW Health have developed a patient factsheet about Release and recovery from COVID-19. Most people with COVID-19 recover within a few weeks but some people may have symptoms that last much longer. A NSW Health medical practitioner or registered nurse will advise when patients can leave self-isolation and provide them with a medical clearance notice. This means that the patient no longer infectious and cannot pass COVID-19 on to other people.

Patients must keep their medical clearance notice as to show it to your employer or a police officer to show that they:

  • Are taken to be “fully vaccinated” for six months after the date on medical clearance notice, and are exempt from any vaccination requirements in the public health orders
  • Are exempt from participating in mandatory surveillance testing for six months after the date on the medical clearance notice
  • Do not need to self-isolate if they are identified as a close-contact of a person with COVID-19 for 6 months after the date on the medical clearance notice.

The Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI) currently recommends that people who have had confirmed COVID-19 do not need to be vaccinated for up to six months following illness. In some people, earlier vaccination may be appropriate.

Reminder to record batch numbers for COVID-19 vaccines

Services Australia has identified a number of AIR records where the COVID-19 vaccine batch number has been entered incorrectly or left blank.

Under the Australian Immunisation Register Act 2015 (AIR Act) it is mandatory for all vaccination providers to report to the Australian Immunisation Register (AIR) any COVID-19 vaccinations administrated on or after 20 February 2021, including:

  • personal information: Medicare number (if applicable), name, contact details, date of birth, gender
  • vaccine information: brand name, dose number and batch number, date of administration, for COVID19 vaccines – vial serial number (if known)
  • provider information: provider number, name and contact details

Providers and sites may be contacted by Services Australia to update these details.

Providers and locations providing COVID-19 vaccinations are encouraged to check that clinical software is up to date to support efficient and accurate integration with AIR.

Further information is available on the Australian Government Department of Health website including links to the detailed information in the Australian Immunisation Register Rule 2015.

Webinar

Register here for upcoming NCIRS webinar: Weighing up the benefits and risks of COVID-19 vaccination: a focus on safety.

Date and time: Wednesday 13 October 2021, 12.30 pm – 2.00 pm  AEDT

Consider the risks and benefits of COVID-19 vaccination and learn strategies for discussions to support your patients, friends and family in making decisions.

COVID-19 live stream update for GPs

Join the latest COVID-19 vaccine live stream update for GPs. The panel will provide latest key updates and answer participants’ questions live about the COVID-19 vaccine rollout. Get involved by submitting questions and comments!

Details: Thursday 30 September, 11:30am (AEDT) | Click link to join

Catch up on previous webinars 

Translated Resources

New and updated resources

Immunisation Weekly Update

Catch up on previous Immunisation Weekly Updates on our Immunisation New & Alerts webpage.

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