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?

OPTIONS XII for the Control of Influenza: Late breaking abstract submissions open

OPTIONS for the Control of Influenza is a global scientific meeting with a dedicated focus on influenza. OPTIONS XII will be held in Brisbane from Sunday 29 September to Wednesday 2 October 2024. 

Highlights of this year’s conference include focuses on:

  • Pacific Island and First Nations health 
  • Interdisciplinary science 
  • Knowledge exchange and networking 
  • Policy and advocacy. 

Submissions for late breaking orals and posters are open until 11 July 2024.
Earlybird registrations are open until 13 June 2024. 

Learn more about OPTIONS XII and abstract submission on the OPTIONS XII website. 

A course in Vaccinology and Immunisation Science

Registration is now open for an eight-part course on vaccinology, presented by the Peter Doherty Institute for Infection and Immunity, द टीकाकरण अनुसंधान और निगरानी के लिए राष्ट्रीय केंद्र (एनसीआईआरएस) और यह Murdoch Children’s Research Institute (MCRI).

A course in Vaccinology and Immunisation Science will be delivered fortnightly in 1.5 hour sessions online, presented by world-leading Australian and international experts. Topics are as follows:

  1. 5 June – Immunology & Modern Vaccine Design
  2. 19 June – Vaccine Evaluation: Clinical Trials & Real World Evidence
  3. 3 July – Economics & Regulation
  4. 17 July – Role of Industry 
  5. 31 July – Immunisation Program Advice and Delivery 
  6. 14 August – Immunisation Effectiveness Evaluation 
  7. 28 August – Vaccine Safety, Confidence and Hesitancy 
  8. 11 September – The Future 

Read more and register on the a course in Vaccinology and Immunisation Science website. 

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

अद्यतित प्रतिरक्षण संदर्भ पृष्ठ: रोटावायरस

Rotavirus infections are the leading cause of dehydrating gastroenteritis in young children. Rotaviruses belong to the genus रोटावायरस (in the family Reoviridae) which comprises eight species, referred to as A, B, C, D, E, F, G and H.

MVEC has recently updated its reference page on rotavirus. The updated page includes more details on rotavirus symptoms, transmission and epidemiology. There is detail guidance on vaccine considerations, side effects, precautions and contraindications, as well as links to helpful resources.

एमवीईसी: रोटावायरस

Expansion of the National Immunisation Program Vaccinations in Pharmacy (NIPVIP) Program

As of 29 April, the NIPVIP program has been expanded to allow pharmacies to claim payment for the administration of National Immunisation Program (NIP) vaccinations in residential aged care and disability homes.

Read more on the Department of Health and Aged Care website
MVEC: Launch of the National Immunisation Program Vaccinations in Pharmacy (NIPVIP) Program (February 2024)

Immunisation Coalition: 2024 COVID-19 webinar

On Tuesday 14 May, the Immunisation Coalition will hold its annual update on COVID-19 in Australia for GPs, immunisation nurses, pharmacists and other immunisation professionals. 

The webinar will feature Prof Gary Grohmann as a speaker, and will be moderated by Dr Andrew Minton. 

For more details and to register, visit the Immunisation Coalition event page. 

एमवीईसी: कोविड-19