National Immunisation Program: New meningococcal vaccine funded from 1 July 2024

From 1 July 2024, the meningococcal ACWY vaccine MenQuadfi will be funded on the National Immunisation Program (NIP). 

Invasive meningococcal disease (IMD) is caused by infection with the bacteria Neisseria meningitidis. It can result meningitis and septicaemia, as well as other infections like pneumonia, arthritis and conjunctivitis. Children under 2 years have the highest incidence of meningococcal disease in Australia, with another peak among adolescents and young adults aged 15 to 24 years.

MenQuadfi replaces Nimenrix for the adolescent age group (year 10 equivalent and up to 19 years for catch up). Children aged 12 months and those with specific medical conditions will continue to receive the Nimenrix vaccination on the NIP. 

MenQuadfi was registered for use by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) in 2020. It is given as a single 0.5 mL dose, to be administered intramuscularly. 

NIP: Meningococcal ACWY vaccines – updates for 1 July 2024
TGA: MenQuadfi
एमवीईसी: मेनिंगोकोकल 


Victorian Department of Health: Changes to mpox vaccine eligibility criteria

Mpox is a viral zoonosis (an infection spread from animals to humans). Since April this year, there have been 24 confirmed cases of mpox in Victoria, 21 of which were locally acquired.

In Victoria, the eligibility criteria for free primary prevention vaccination (PPV) and post-exposure preventative vaccinations (PEPV) have been expanded.

Find out more about the recent transmission and accessing vaccines at Victorian Department of Health: Changes to mpox vaccine eligibility criteria. 

MVEC: Mpox


ProQuad stock due to expire 16 June

Stock of the measles-mumps-rubella-varicella (MMRV) vaccine ProQuad is due to expire on 16 June 2024. 

ProQuad will cease to be listed on the National Immunisation Program (NIP) schedule on 1 July 2024. 

Vaccines must be disposed of immediately when the expiry date is reached, according to your state or territory's requirements. 


Victorian Department of Health: Mpox health alert updated

The Victorian Department of Health has updated its alert relating to local transmission of mpox.

The health alert, first published on 29 April 2024, was updated on 28 May 2024, and again on 6 June 2024.
Since 18 April this year, there have been 24 confirmed cases of mpox in Victoria, 21 of which were acquired locally.

Eligibility criteria for free mpox vaccination in Victoria have been expanded.
Find more information about the recent transmission and accessing vaccines at the Department of Health: Local transmission of mpox in Victoria health alert.

MVEC: Mpox


Australian Immunisation Handbook: New chapter on mpox

The Australian Government Department of Health and Aged Care recently added a new chapter on mpox (previously known as monkeypox) to the ऑस्ट्रेलियाई टीकाकरण पुस्तिका.

Mpox is a viral zoonosis (an infection spread from animals to humans). In Victoria, vaccination is available free of charge for individuals who meet certain criteria.

The new chapter on mpox includes detailed information on mpox disease, epidemiology, vaccination and more.

Read the new chapter at Australian Immunisation Handbook: Mpox

Victorian Department of Health: Mpox
MVEC: Mpox


BBC: A 70-year-old system could help us prepare a bird flu vaccine for humans

There is a current global animal pandemic of avian influenza, but the virus does not yet have the ability to spread efficiently in humans. Should this change, there are systems in place to produce a human vaccine for bird flu. 

This month in Victoria, a human case of avian influenza was detected in a recently returned traveller. 

Read more about avian flu vaccine preparedness at BBC: A 70-year-old system could help us prepare a bird flu vaccine for humans. 


Victorian Department of Health: Recent health alerts

In the last fortnight the Victorian Department of Health has issued health alerts relating to measles and COVID-19.

On 10 May an alert was issued regarding an increase in COVID-19 activity, resulting in an increase in hospitalisations. The Department suggests six steps to stay ahead of COVID-19:

  1. wear a mask
  2. get vaccinated
  3. let fresh air in
  4. get tested
  5. stay at home
  6. take antivirals if eligible.

You can read more about the COVID-19 alert on the Health Department’s website.

On 11 May, then updated on 17 May, alerts were issued relating to two separate cases of measles in returned overseas travellers. Measles is highly infectious. Visit the Health Department’s website for more information including a list of exposure sites.

एमवीईसी: कोविड-19
एमवीईसी: खसरा


The Conversation: Flu vaccines are no longer free for all under-12s in NZ

After free flu vaccines were funded for children under 12 in 2022, funding in New Zealand has now been cut back meaning only high-risk children aged 6 months to under 4 years are eligible for free vaccines.

In Australia, all children aged 6 months to under 5 years are eligible for free influenza vaccination. Annual flu vaccination is recommended for all Australians aged over 6 months.

Read about the impact of New Zealand’s funded influenza vaccine program in The Conversation: Flu vaccines are no longer free for all under-12s in NZ.

एमवीईसी: इन्फ्लुएंजा


The Conversation: Too many Australians aren’t getting a flu vaccine. Why, and what can we do about it?

Holly Seale from the School of Population Health, UNSW Sydney examines the rates of influenza vaccine uptake in Australia so far in 2024, and explores solutions to rates that are lowers than at the same point last year.

The Conversation: Too many Australians aren’t getting a flu vaccine. Why, and what can we do about it?


WHO prequalifies new dengue vaccine

On 10 May 2024, the World Health Organization (WHO) approved a new vaccine for dengue prevention. The vaccine, called Q-denga or TAK-003 is a live-attenuated vaccine containing weakened versions of the four serotypes of the virus that cause dengue.

WHO recommends the use of TAK-003 in children aged 6 to 16 years in settings with high dengue burden and transmission intensity. The vaccine should be administered in a 2-dose schedule with a 3-month interval between doses.

TAK-003 is the second dengue vaccine to be prequalified by WHO (the first was Dengvaxia, or CYD-TDV). WHO prequalification of medicines is a service provided by WHO to assess the quality, safety and efficacy of medicinal products. Prequalification is intended to give aid and international procurement agencies the choice of a wide range of quality medicines for bulk purchase in resource-limited countries. 

Read more on the WHO website: WHO prequalifies new dengue vaccine