The Vaccine Coverage: MVEC’s new podcast is out!

MVEC has released the first two episodes of our new podcast, ‘The Vaccine Coverage’. 

This series features conversations with special guests on a range of topics relating to vaccination in Australia.

The first two episodes cover vaccine myths, and how our body's respond when we receive a vaccine.

Listen on our website or search ‘The Vaccine Coverage’ in your favourite podcast app. 

Immunisation Coalition: 2024 HPV webinar

The Immunisation Coalition will hold its annual update on human papillomavirus (HPV) on Wednesday 13 March. 

The webinar will be held from 6:00 p.m.–7 p.m. (AEDT) and features Angela Newbound as presenter and Dr Andrew Minton as moderator. 

Find out more and register on the Immunisation Coalition’s event page.


NCIRS: Upcoming webinars on respiratory disease

In March, the National Centre for Immunisation Research and Surveillance (NCIRS) will hold two webinars in their ‘Preventing respiratory disease in 2024’ series: on RSV on Thursday 7 March and on influenza on Wednesday 27 March.

Learn more and register for ‘RSV vaccines for the protection of older adults’
Thursday 7 March at 12:00 p.m.–1:00 p.m.

Learn more and register for ‘Influenza and COVID-19 vaccination update’
Wednesday 27 March at 12:00 p.m.–1:00 p.m.

Catch up on ‘New RSV vaccine and antibody to prevent disease in infants’
Held on Tuesday 27 February, recording now available

ATAGI: Statement on the clinical use of Arexvy

ATAGI (Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation) has published a statement on the clinical use of Arexvy, a respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) vaccine, for the prevention of RSV in older adults in Australia. 

Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is one of the leading causes of respiratory tract infections in young children and is associated with severe respiratory disease in people aged over 60 years.   

Arexvy is available on the private market, and is recommended for: 

  • all adults aged over 75 years 
  • First Nations Australians aged 60 to 74 years 
  • Non-Indigenous Australians with medical conditions that increase their risk of severe disease due to RSV. 

ATAGI’s full statement includes further details on recommendations, contraindications, coadministration, RSV and Arexvy.

A new chapter on RSV will be available in the Australian Immunisation Handbook by mid-2024. Until then, use the ATAGI statement for clinical guidance. 

ATAGI: Statement on the clinical use of Arexvy


CDC on RSV vaccine administration errors

The CDC reports that, in the United States, the respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) vaccine Arexvy has been administered in error to some children and pregnant people. Arexvy is not approved for use in infants or young children, or pregnant people. Most of the reported administration errors occurred in outpatient settings (e.g. GP clinics and pharmacies). 

In January Arexvy was registered by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) for use in Australia, for the immunisation of people aged 60 years and older to prevent lower respiratory tract disease caused by RSV. 

ATAGI (Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation) today (29 February 2024) published guidance on the clinical use of Arexvy.

CDC Clinical Outreach and Communication Activity: Information on respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) vaccine administration errors in young children and pregnancy people

New MVEC podcast: The Vaccine Coverage

MVEC is excited to share that we will be launching a brand new podcast series: The Vaccine Coverage.

This podcast series will feature conversations with special guests on a range of topics relating to vaccination in Australia. The Vaccine Coverage is for anyone who wants to learn more about vaccination: parents, individuals receiving vaccines and vaccine providers too.

Stay tuned.

And in the meantime, check out our previous podcast series COVID19 Road to a vaccine, in which MVEC Director Prof Nigel Crawford interviewed national and international vaccine experts in the leadup to the launch of COVID-19 vaccines.

Immunisation Coalition: 2024 Meningococcal webinar

The Immunisation Coalition will host the 2024 Meningococcal webinar on Tuesday 20 February.

The webinar will provide an update on invasive meningococcal disease (IMD) in the community, and features Prof Robert Booy with Dr Andrew Baird as moderator.

When: 6:00 pm EDT on 20 February 2024

Learn more about the webinar and register through the Immunisation Coalition.

MVEC: Meningococcal

Updated immunisation reference page: Pneumococcal

Pneumococcal disease is a leading cause of serious illness in Australian children under 2 years and older Australians, and is responsible for over a million deaths worldwide every year.

Pneumococcal disease is caused by infection with the bacteria Streptococcus pneumoniae. Symptoms vary depending on the site of infection; they may include fever, headache, earache and cough. Infection may result in meningitis (inflammation of the tissue surrounding the brain and spinal cord), pneumonia, septicaemia (blood infection) and osteomyelitis (bone infection), for example.

We have recently updated our pneumococcal reference page. The updated page includes more details on pneumococcal transmission and epidemiology, as well as detailed guidance on vaccine recommendations by age and risk category.

MVEC: Pneumococcal

WHO: Nearly 10 000 children vaccinated as malaria vaccine rollout in Africa expands

Nearly 10,000 children in Burkina Faso and Cameroon have received the RTS,S malaria vaccine in recent weeks. The vaccine rollout in the two countries is a critical step forward in the fight against one of the leading causes of death in Africa. At least 28 African countries plan to introduce a malaria vaccine as part of their national immunisation programs.

There have been two malaria vaccines endorsed for use in Africa: RTS,S (available now) and R21 (expected to be available in mid 2024). Four doses are recommended for both vaccines; 3 by 9 months of age and the last dose at 18 months of age.

WHO: Nearly 10 000 children vaccinated as malaria vaccine rollout in Africa expands

Gavi: Vaccine profiles: malaria

The Guardian: Brazil starts mass vaccination amid upsurge in dengue fever

Brazil has become the first country to roll out a national dengue vaccination program, in response to a surge of dengue fever cases across the country. The country's health ministry said nearly 365,000 dengue cases were reported in the first five weeks of 2024, four times the number during the same period in 2023.

Brazil has purchased 5.2m doses of the dengue vaccine Qdenga and is commencing vaccination of children aged 10 to 14 years.

Dengue is a viral infection, spread by mosquitoes to people. Since the beginning of 2023, there have been more than five million cases globally and more than 5,000 dengue-related deaths reported.

The Guardian: Brazil starts mass vaccination amid upsurge in dengue fever

WHO: Disease outbreak news: Dengue