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Workplace immunisation

Certain occupations, particularly those related to healthcare are associated with an increased risk of vaccine preventable diseases.

Other occupations such as plumbers, emergency and essential services, and those working with children, animals or specific communities are recommended to be protected against certain vaccine preventable diseases.

Workplace immunisations make sense. They will protect staff from illness, will protect people in their care and reduce absenteeism from the workplace.

Immunisation should be offered as part of a workplace prevention program which will also include encouraging staff to practise good hygiene, seek appropriate treatment and stay home when unwell.

Vaccination for healthcare workers – Seventh edition - 2014 (updated August 2014)
Healthcare workers may be exposed to, and transmit, vaccine-preventable diseases such as influenza, measles, rubella and pertussis. Maintaining immunity in the healthcare worker population helps prevent transmission of vaccine-preventable diseases to and from healthcare workers and patients.

The likelihood of contact with patients and/or blood or body substances determines vaccination recommendations. Healthcare workers should receive the vaccines they require before or within the first few weeks of employment, with the exception of influenza vaccine, which should be administered annually between March and May. Work activities, rather than job title, should be considered on an individual basis to ensure an appropriate level of protection is afforded to each healthcare worker.

Medical facilities are encouraged to formulate a comprehensive immunisation policy for all healthcare workers. Each worker should be individually assessed for specific vaccines, taking possible contraindications into account.

Work practices should include the use of standard and additional precautions to minimise exposure to blood and body fluids. If exposure does occur, guidelines for post exposure prophylaxis should be followed. Ensure that post exposure guidelines are easily accessible 24 hours a day.

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  Vaccination for healthcare workers - Seventh edition (updated August 2014)
Influenza immunisation for workplaces

Keep your workers healthy!

Influenza can seriously impact your workplace - the close proximity and impact of people coming into work unwell makes it the ideal place to share such a highly contagious disease.

Workers with flu take an average of two weeks to recover and because they can be contagious before any symptoms show, it’s easy to spread.

Influenza is not the same as a cold. It is estimated that 2,800 Australians die each year from the complications of influenza, including pneumonia, so it makes sense to protect your staff and those in their care.

The Department of Health is encouraging all workplaces to take influenza seriously and offer free workplace vaccinations to staff.

This kit contains all the information required to arrange and promote a workplace vaccination program, whether you offer a clinic in your office, a mobile clinic to reach workers off-site or arrange vaccinations for staff at your local GP clinic.

Workplace Influenza kit:

For more information:
Immunisation for people working with children
People who work with children are at an increased risk of catching and passing on infectious diseases. Immunisation is recommended because:
  • Young children and babies are more prone to illness as their immunity develops.
  • Children are often less likely to practise good hygiene (for example washing their hands, covering their mouth when they cough and using tissues) and more likely to expose you to their bodily fluids!
  • Some infectious diseases can be very serious. For example, whooping cough (also called pertussis) can be deadly for young babies, but will often be a mild illness in adults.
  • Many infectious diseases, such as measles, are highly infectious several days before any symptoms appear.

Staying up-to-date with immunisations is the most effective way you can protect yourself and the children and babies you work with from vaccine-preventable diseases.

Download fact sheet
Workplace vaccination resources
The Australian Immunisation Handbook

Australian Q Fever Register

Vaccination for healthcare workers - Seventh edition (updated August 2014)

Check your immunisation HALO

'Everyone's HALO is different' - HALO graphic

The immunisations you may need are decided by your health, age, lifestyle and occupation. Together, these factors are referred to as HALO.