New immunisation reference page: COVID-19 vaccines: frequently asked questions

MVEC's COVID-19 vaccine FAQ’s have been designed to address common queries relating to COVID-19 vaccines, and include information on the vaccine development process, priority groups, vaccine effectiveness, storage, administration and safety.

This page will be updated on a regular basis as further information becomes available.

MVEC: COVID-19 vaccines: frequently asked questions

New immunisation reference page: Vaccine-associated enhanced disease (VAED)

With hundreds of COVID-19 vaccine candidates in various stages of development and approval, an understanding of any potentially serious adverse events is vital to ensure vaccine acceptance and confidence.

Our new reference page explores vaccine-associated enhanced disease (VAED). It occurs when a more severe presentation of disease develops in an individual who has previously been immunised, compared with when an infection occurs without prior vaccination. VAED has previously been associated with dengue fever infection; RSV, MERS and SARS-CoV-1 vaccine candidates; as well as a measles virus.

It is a theoretical risk only when considering COVID-19 vaccine candidates however as a result, the possibility of VAED has been closely monitored during all stages of clinical trials for COVID-19 vaccine candidates.

For further information please refer to our reference page:

MVEC: Vaccine-associated enhanced disease (VAED)



New immunisation reference page: COVAX Facility

The COVAX Facility is coordinated by Gavi (the Vaccine Alliance), the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) and the World Health Organization. It brings together governments of over 180 countries, global health organisations, private sector, scientists and manufacturers, in order to provide innovative and equitable access to COVID-19 diagnostics, treatments and vaccines. Our new reference page details information on the COVAX Facility COVID-19 vaccine portfolio.

To read more please refer to the link below:

MVEC: COVAX Facility

New immunisation reference pages: COVID-19 vaccines

In 2020, the Australian Government entered into four Advance Purchase Agreements (APA) for the supply of COVID-19 vaccines, if they prove safe and effective. More than $3.3 billion has been invested through these agreements, putting Australia in a strong position to access safe and effective vaccines when they become available. In 2021, three of these vaccines are still active, with the 4th (University of Queensland) withdrawn from clinical trials. Our new reference pages detail information regarding the clinical trials of each vaccine candidate, interim data on their safety and efficacy, as well as other vaccine specific information.

To read more please refer to the links below:

New immunisation reference page: COVID-19 vaccine platforms

Multiple different vaccine technologies or 'platforms' are being trialled by the over 200 COVID-19 vaccine candidates currently in development in an effort to limit the spread of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Our new reference page provides a summary of the different approaches, including the newer or 'novel' platforms, and highlights the COVID-19 vaccine candidates in the most advanced stages of clinical trials.

To learn more follow the link below:

MVEC: COVID-19 vaccine platforms

New immunisation reference page: Hypotonic-hyporesponsive episode (HHE)

A hypotonic-hyporesponsive episode (HHE) is the sudden onset of muscle limpness, reduced responsiveness or unresponsiveness, and pallor or cyanosis occurring after vaccination in early childhood. The episode usually occurs within 48 hours of vaccination and resolves spontaneously without treatment. Our new reference page describes HHE, its incidence and its impact on future vaccination.

To read more please follow the link below:

MVEC: Hypotonic-hyporesponsive episode (HHE)

New immunisation reference page: Provisional registration of COVID-19 vaccine(s) in Australia

There is lots of interest nationally and internationally regarding the process for regulation of COVID-19 vaccines and concerns that things may be moving ‘too fast’ and steps may be missed. There is also some confusion regarding how these vaccine regulatory processes may vary between countries. Our new reference page outlines the role of the regulatory bodies in Australia in ensuring that any vaccine(s) meets safety and efficacy requirements, what the Australian provisional registration pathway looks like, and how this differs from the vaccine approval processes being used in the USA and Europe.

To read more please refer to:

MVEC: Provisional registration of COVID-19 vaccine(s) in Australia

New immunisation reference page: Yellow fever

Yellow fever is an acute viral haemorrhagic disease transmitted by infected mosquitos. It occurs in the tropical and subtropical regions of Africa, the Caribbean and Central/South America. Vaccination against yellow fever is a requirement for travel to and from certain countries. For more information, including how to access a yellow fever vaccination, please view our reference page below:

MVEC: Yellow fever



New immunisation reference page: The Royal Children's Hospital COVID-19 follow-up clinic

Our new reference page provides details on the COVID-19 follow-up clinic at The Royal Children's Hospital, which aims to provide support, acute care and long-term follow-up to COVID-19 positive children and their families. For further information, including how to refer children to the service, please follow the link below:

MVEC: The Royal Children's Hospital COVID-19 follow-up clinic 

New immunisation reference page: Identifying AEFI in diverse skin colour

The assessment of skin for clinical signs and symptoms is important when identifying adverse events following immunisation (AEFI). Since most dermatological assessment guidelines commonly refer to the presentation of symptoms in patients with light skin tones, the identification of AEFI in a timely manner in diverse skin colours can be challenging for immunisation providers.

Our new reference page details how symptoms such as pallor, cyanosis, erythema and urticaria may appear in diverse skin colours and discusses alternate methods of recognition. For more information please follow the link below:

MVEC: Identifying AEFI in diverse skin colour