Safety, Health and Environment (SHE)
Effective communication is a critical component in ensuring that children are fully vaccinated. Although numerous communication interventions have been proposed and implemented in various parts of Africa, the range of communication strategies used has not yet been mapped systematically. This course forms part of the ‘Communicate to vaccinate’ (COMMVAC) project, an initiative aimed at building research evidence for improving communication with parents and communities about childhood vaccinations in low- and middle-income countries.
Understanding Vaccines and the National Immunisation Program aims to equip health professionals with knowledge and skills to competently deliver a high quality and safe immunisation service.
This module aims to introduce the learner to immunisation as a public health measure and discusses the effectiveness of immunisation programs. The module delivers information on the fundamentals of microbiology and immunology, providing a foundation of vaccination, vaccine types and components, vaccine performance and licensing and how vaccines work. The National Immunisation Program (NIP) is introduced, including the strategic priorities of the NIP and the role of key stakeholders. Module topics include:
Levels of many vaccine preventable diseases are low in Africa, but there continues to be a risk of diseases being imported, and others continue to occur in Africa. Module 2 presents information on each vaccine preventable disease in the National Immunisation Program followed by information on the vaccine designed to protect against the disease. The recommended age of administration and number of doses required for each vaccine is discussed, and how this is determined by the vaccine type and the need to balance disease protection for a particular age group with the need to ensure an appropriate immune response. Module topics include:
This module will deliver information on specific groups that, for a variety of reasons, are at higher risk of some vaccine preventable diseases and have special vaccination requirements. Module 3 will aim to assist the health practitioner to apply the legal and ethical considerations for immunisation practice, gain valid consent, effectively communicate risk in the clinical setting and provide the learner with an understanding of the key elements of vaccine safety.
The learner is informed of the potential adverse events after the administration of a vaccine, how to advise the individuals of these and how adverse events are reported, monitored and investigated to ensure community safety and maintain confidence in immunisation programs. Module topics include:
This module describes the requirements for vaccine storage and the national recommendations that are to be integrated into practice to ensure vaccines remain potent and effective so that when administered, they provide protection against these vaccine preventable diseases in the community.
Module 4 will introduce the learner to the requirements necessary to deliver a high quality and safe immunisation service and the strategies and resources to improve immunisation coverage rates in Australia. The importance of the need for immunisation providers to be proficient in all aspects of the clinical encounter will be discussed and the steps involved in calculating a catch-up schedule. Module topics include: