Immunisation is one of the most effective public health interventions in reducing morbidity and mortality from infectious diseases.  However, vaccine preventable diseases still occur in Australia despite ready access to safe and effective vaccines. This can lead to increased use of GP services, time away from school and work, hospitalisation, disability, and premature death. 

WA Primary Health alliance aims to improve childhood immunisation rates and immunisation coverage in a wider context such as preventable hospital admissions (influenza and pneumococcal disease in children and the elderly as well as pertussis), in Aboriginal Health (timeliness of immunisation and adult immunisation) as well as Aged Care and Population Health (vulnerable populations, chronic disease, outbreaks of vaccine preventable diseases and epidemics).

For further information or support with immunisation, contact the Practice Assist Team or email WAPHA's Immunisation Team.  

Immunisation Information and Resources

Australian Immunisation Register (AIR)

The Australian Immunisation Register (AIR) is a national register that records vaccines given to people of all ages in Australia.

The AIR can only accept immunisation information from recognised vaccination providers in Australia. This means the AIR cannot accept any information from parents.

Medical practitioners, midwives and nurse practitioners with a Medicare provider number are:
  • automatically recognised as vaccination providers, and
  • authorised to record or get immunisation data from the AIR
Practice Assist, through WA Primary Health Alliance (WAPHA), collaborates with the WA Immunisation Networks to develop strategies for continuing to improve awareness and uptake of vaccinations both in the community and in general practice. 

National Immunisation Program (NIP)

The National Immunisation Program (NIP) aims to increase national immunisation coverage to help reduce diseases that can be prevented by vaccination.

The program provides free essential vaccines to protect eligible people against a range of diseases.

The program is an established collaborative program involving the Australian Government along with State and Territory Governments.

The Australian Government is responsible for National immunisation policy and the purchase of vaccines covered by the program.

The State and Territory Governments are responsible for coordination and oversight of immunisation service delivery and distribution of vaccines. 

Vaccine Adverse Events and Administration Mistakes

An Adverse Event Following Immunisation (AEFI) as described by the online Australian Immunisation Handbook is any negative reaction that follows vaccination. It does not necessarily have a causal relationship with the vaccine.

The adverse event may be any:
  • unfavourable or unintended sign
  • unfavourable or unintended symptom
  • disease
  • abnormal laboratory finding
These events may be caused by the vaccine(s) or may occur by chance (that is, the event would have occurred regardless of vaccination).

Mild events, such as fever, pain or redness at the site of injection, tiredness and aches and pains commonly occur after vaccination with some vaccines and should be anticipated.

Under the Public Health Act 2005, events following immunisation are a notifiable condition. It is very important that all AEFI are reported, particularly if serious or unexpected, as this will enable vaccine safety issues to be identified and managed appropriately as soon as possible.

Vaccination Administration Errors (VAEs) can occur due to errors in vaccine preparation, handling, storage or administration and can be associated with immunisation error-related reactions. Identification and follow-up of VAEs can identify and correct immunisation error-related reactions in a timely manner, and essential to ensuring the quality and safety of a vaccination service.

It is the responsibility of the immunisation provider to manage VAEs and should seek advice from their Public Health Unit if required. VAEs that result in a suspected adverse event following immunisation, must be reported to WA Department of Health.

Cold Chain Management

The cold chain is the system of transporting and storing vaccines within the safe temperature range of 2°C to 8°C. Vaccines can lose their effectiveness if stored outside this temperature range. Most  Vaccines are destroyed by freezing.

Responsibility for cold chain begins from the time the vaccine is manufactured, continues through to the state or territory vaccine distribution centres, and to each immunisation service provider, and ends when the vaccine is administered.

Immunisation Training and Education Resources

WA Primary Health Alliance (WAPHA) Webinars

Practice Assist acknowledges and pays respect to the Traditional Owners and Elders of this country and recognises the significant importance of their cultural heritage, values and beliefs and how these contribute to the positive health and wellbeing of the whole community.

While the Australian Government Department of Health has contributed to the funding of this website, the information on this website does not necessarily reflect the views of the Australian Government and is not advice that is provided, or information that is endorsed, by the Australian Government. The Australian Government is not responsible in negligence or otherwise for any injury, loss or damage however arising from the use of or reliance on the information provided on this website.