Victorian Department of Health: Japanese encephalitis vaccine program

Japanese encephalitis virus (JEV) is a rare but potentially serious infection caused by the flavivirus. It is spread to humans through mosquito bites. 

Due to recent high rainfall and flooding across large areas of Victoria, the Victorian Department of Health is reminding people to take precautions against mosquito bites, and to get vaccinated if at high risk of exposure to the virus. 

Victorian Department of Health: Japanese encephalitis 

Launch of National Immunisation Program Vaccinations in Pharmacy (NIPVIP) program

The Australian government’s National Immunisation Program Vaccinations in Pharmacy (NIPVIP) program commenced on 1 January 2024. 

The NIPVIP allows individuals aged 5 years and over to receive scheduled NIP vaccines in a community pharmacy at no financial cost. 

Read more about NIPVIP on the Department of Health and Aged Care website और यह Pharmacy Programs Administrator website. 

TGA: New RSV vaccine

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. 

In January 2024, AREXVY was registered by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) for the immunisation of people aged 60 years and older to prevent lower respiratory tract disease caused by RSV. AREXVY is a recombinant respiratory syncytial virus pre-fusion F protein vaccine. Guidance on its use is yet to come. 

TGA: Guidance and resources on AREXVY 

Mobile-based game designed to fight misinformation around climate change, and now vaccines

The ‘Cranky Uncle’ game – a mobile/web game designed to fight misinformation on climate change – has been adapted into the ‘Cranky Uncle Vaccine’ game for use in East African countries.

Melbourne academic Dr John Cook developed the ‘Cranky Uncle’ game to incentivise players to build resilience against misinformation.

The game relies on inoculation theory as a solution to misinformation. In the game, the cranky uncle character teaches the player techniques of science denial (e.g. fake experts and logical fallacies). The theory is that exposure to a weakened form of misinformation can develop cognitive immunity.

The new ‘Cranky Uncle Vaccine’ game was co-designed through workshops held in Uganda, Kenya and Rwanda, and informed by a review of studies on vaccine misinformation.

Though it is climate-focused, the original version of the ‘Cranky Uncle’ game provides helpful tools for fighting misinformation in general.

Learn about and play the ‘Cranky Uncle’ game

Read The Guardian: Climate and vaccine misinformation seemed worlds apart – but it turned out the Cranky Uncle was a universal figure

Read the paper published in the Journal of Health Communication Co-Designing a mobile-based game to improve misinformation resistance and vaccine knowledge in Uganda, Kenya, and Rwanda

MMWR: Progress in Immunization Safety Monitoring

A recent report shows that national AEFI (adverse event following immunisation) surveillance systems increasingly support the timely sharing of immunisation safety data, including individual case-based reports. When shared globally, individual case safety reports contribute to the description of trends and regional characteristics of AEFIs. 

But work is still needed to strengthen global vaccine safety monitoring, and to promote public confidence in national vaccine programs. 

MMWR: Progress in Immunization Safety Monitoring

GAVI: HPV vaccine roll-out in Nigeria

In late October, Nigeria began its public roll-out of the HPV vaccine.

After initial scepticism over the vaccine, community leaders campaigned to ensure the vaccine reaches all girls in the eligible age bracket.

Gavi reports, in great detail, on how the campaigners tackled misinformation and educated community member. Read more यहाँ.

ABC: Why a national shortage of cat vaccines may cause holiday havoc with pet owners

Due to an increase in pet adoption during the pandemic and manufacturing facilities shifting towards COVID-19 vaccine production, Australia is currently affected by a global shortage of cat vaccines. 

The shortage may mean cat owners have trouble booking their pets into catteries, if they’re not up to date with their vaccines. 

Read the ABC article in full

WHO on a return to trivalent influenza vaccines

Since there has been no detection of the naturally occurring B/Yamagata-lineage influenza virus since 2020, the opinion of the World Health Organization (WHO) influenza vaccine composition advisory committee is that the inclusion of B/Yamagata-lineage antigens in influenza vaccines is no longer warranted.

WHO recommends trivalent or quadrivalent influenza vaccines.

WHO Q&A on recommendations for 2024 south hemisphere composition of influenza vaccines 

WSPID Call to action: Ensuring fair prices for all vaccines for all countries with limited resources

The World Society for Pediatric Infectious Diseases (WSPID) is calling on governments and international organisations around the world to address vaccine price as a matter of urgency.

WSPID’s call to action aims to address the systemic issue of unaffordable vaccine prices, through a comprehensive, multi-stakeholder approach. 

Visit the WSPID website to learn more, read the call to action in full and to sign on.

Victorian Department of Health: Zostavax vaccine stock to be discarded

To avoid a shingles vaccine administration error, the Victorian Department of Health advises immunisation providers to immediately discard any remaining government supplied stock of Zostavax.

The national Shingrix vaccine program for shingles (also known as herpes zoster) was launched on 1 November 2023, replacing the previous nationally funded Zostavax program.

The MVEC zoster reference page includes vaccination guidelines and a commonly asked questions section.

एमवीईसी: ज़ोस्टर