Lý lịch

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, or First Nations Australians, have higher rates of some vaccine-preventable diseases (VPD) than non-Indigenous Australians. This is due to a variety of factors, including access barriers to health care and preventative care, higher burden of chronic medical conditions and social determinants such as overcrowding and socioeconomic factors. For this reason, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples are prioritised for additional protection through the funding of further vaccines on the National Immunisation Program (NIP). 

Variations to recommendations for additional vaccines vary from state to state, based on local disease burden. In addition to this, individual immunisation providers (e.g. hospital immunisation services) may have varying approaches to additional vaccines; this should be clarified with the local health service.

khuyến nghị

All First Nations Australians are recommended to receive the same vaccines given to non-Indigenous Australians. Additional vaccines prioritisedFirst Nations Australians Mộtre summarised in the table below. 

Table 1: NIP-funded vaccine priorities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples 

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^ Refer to MVEC: Viêm não mô cầu for specific medical conditions and vaccination guidance.
# If Pneumovax 23 is inadvertently given before Prevenar 13 dose, wait 12 months before administering Prevenar 13.
* Shingrix vaccination is funded from 18 years of age for those with a history of haematopoietic stem cell transplant, solid organ transplant, blood cancer and advanced/untreated HIV).
¥ If 6-month dose is not given, refer to Sổ tay Chủng ngừa Úc for catch up advice.
shaded boxes indicate live attenuated vaccines

Vaccine-preventable diseases (VPD) targeted through funding

  • viêm gan A

    Factors associated with hepatitis A transmission include (but are not limited to) overcrowding and poor sanitation conditions. Before the introduction of the NIP-funded Hepatitis A vaccination program, Hepatitis A was particularly prevalent in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. Rates in First Nations children aged under 5 years were over 20 times higher than those in non-Indigenous children in the same age group. This disease burden was most prominent in more remote areas, particularly in northern Australia.  

    For more information, refer to Australian Immunisation Handbook: Hepatitis A

  • Herpes zoster (shingles)

    Herpes zoster (shingles) is caused by a reactivation of the varicella zoster virus, the same virus that causes thủy đậu (chickenpox) disease. Zoster episodes requiring primary care presentation and/or nhập viện impact Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people at an earlier age than non-Indigenous Australians. In addition, the increased burden of chronic and complex diseases means that First Nations Australians are more likely to develop herpes zoster and its associated complications compared with other Australians.  

    For more information, refer to MVEC: Zoster

  • Cúm

    First Nations Australians are three times more likely than non-Indigenous people to be admitted to hospital for influenza and pneumonia. Vaccination can offer protection against disease and its complications. 

    For more information, refer to MVEC: Influenza page

  • não mô cầu

    First Nations Australians have a 10-fold increased incidence of invasive meningococcal disease compared to non-Indigenous people across some age groups. Certain medical conditions further increase the likelihood of experiencing disease (e.g. immunosuppression, asplenia). Protection is offered through vaccination at the ages where disease affects individuals at the highest rates. 

    For more information, refer to MVEC: Viêm não mô cầu

  • phế cầu khuẩn

    Rates of invasive pneumococcal disease (IPD) are 6 to 7 times higher for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples compared with non-Indigenous Australians. The risk of invasive pneumococcal disease  (IPD) is greatest in young children under 5 and adults over 50 years. Protection is offered through vaccination at the ages where disease affects individuals at the highest rates. 

    For more information, refer to MVEC: Phế cầu khuẩn

  • Bệnh lao

    In most areas of Australia, rates of tuberculosis are similar for First Nations Australians and non-Indigenous Australians. However, there are some specific regions where the burden of disease is higher amongst First Nations people. The reasons for this increased burden are varied; it may be associated with high density living conditions (contributing to ease of transmission) and being in close proximity to other countries with high rates of disease (contributing to imported cases by travellers).  

    For more information about tuberculosis vaccination (with advice specific to Victoria), refer to MVEC: Tuberculosis


Easy Mộtccess ĐẾN vaccines important. High vaccine coverage and being vaccinated on time are key ĐẾN reducing the burden of many VPDs among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peopleS.

All routine and additional immunisations can be administered via GP services, hội đồng địa phương,, hospital immunisation services, some pharmacies and local Aboriginal Health Services.

Other considerations

Individuals may also benefit from other vaccines not previously mentioned on this page, depending on other factors, such as: 

  • vaccination history 
  • medical conditions
  • sexual orientation
  • proximity to local outbreaks
  • travel plans
  • occupational risk.

Các tác giả: Rachael McGuire (Điều phối viên Y tá Giáo dục MVEC), Nigel Crawford (Giám đốc SAEFVIC, Viện Nghiên cứu Trẻ em Murdoch) và Rebecca Feore (Y tá Tiêm chủng, Bệnh viện Nhi đồng Hoàng gia)

Đượcxem xét bởi: Rachael McGuire (MVEC Education Nurse Coordinator) and Katie Butler (MVEC Education Nurse Coordinator)

Ngày: December 2023

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You should not consider the information on this site to be specific, professional medical advice for your personal health or for your family’s personal health. For medical concerns, including decisions about vaccinations, medications and other treatments, you should always consult a healthcare professional.