What's New

Meningococcal ACWY school based vaccination program extended to Year 11 and 12 students

In February 2018, ACT Health introduced a new meningococcal ACWY vaccination program into ACT high schools for Year 10 students. Funded catch-up vaccines were also available for people aged 16 to 19 years through their general practitioner.

Building on the success of the Year 10 program, the ACT government has announced that schools-based vaccination clinics will be extended to Year 11 and 12 students during Terms 3 and 4 of this year. 

Trained nurses from the ACT Schools Health Team will visit all ACT high schools and colleges during the second semester of 2018 to offer the vaccine.

Any young person aged 15 to 19 years who has yet to receive the meningococcal vaccine can get the vaccine free through their GP until the end of 2018.

Watch the campaign video here to see why getting your free meningococcal ACWY vaccine is so important.

The Childhood National Immunisation Schedule changes on 1 July 2018 

From 1 July 2018 the National Immunisation Program (NIP) Schedule of vaccines given to children from birth to four years is changing.


The Childhood Schedule from 1 July 2018


  • Hepatitis B (usually offered in hospital)

2 Months
(can be given from 6 weeks of age)

  • Diptheria, tetanus, pertussis (whooping cough), hepatitis B, polio, Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib)

  • Pneumococcal

  • Rotavirus

4 Months

  • Diptheria, tetanus, pertussis (whooping cough), hepatitis B, polio, Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib)

  • Pneumococcal

  • Rotavirus

6 Months

  • Diptheria, tetanus, pertussis (whooping cough), hepatitis B, polio, Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib)

12 Months

  • Meningococcal ACWY

  • Measles, mumps, rubella

  • Pneumococcal

18 Months

  • Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib)

  • Measles, mumps, rubella, chickenpox

  • Diptheria, tetanus, whooping cough

4 years 

  • Diptheria, tetanus, whooping cough, polio

*High risk children aged 6 months and older may require additional immunisations. 

For more information on the changes please visit the Australian Government Department of Health website https://beta.health.gov.au/health-topics/immunisation

Free flu vaccine for children aged 6 months to under 5 years

A new ACT Government funded Childhood Influenza Vaccination Program will offer free flu vaccine to ACT children aged between six months and under five years from April 2018.

Influenza (commonly known as ‘flu’) is a highly contagious respiratory illness caused by the influenza virus. It is spread from person to person by virus-containing respiratory droplets produced during coughing or sneezing.

Flu can be fatal, even in healthy children. Infants and children under 5 years of age are at increased risk of flu-related complications. A yearly flu vaccine is the best way to reduce the risk of your child getting sick with the flu and spreading the flu to others.

The free flu vaccine will be available through your usual immunisation provider, including GPs and ACT Health Early Childhood Immunisation Clinics, from April 2018. While the vaccine is provided free by the ACT Government, your doctor may charge a consultation fee.

Free vaccine in 2018 for 16-19 year olds to protect against meningococcal disease

In December 2017, the ACT government announced funding of a free meningococcal ACWY vaccine for Year 10 students and a catch-up program for those aged 16 to 19 years. The catch-up program is available in 2018 only.

Adolescents aged 16 to 19 years can receive the vaccine as a catch-up dose through their GPs.

Meningococcal disease is an uncommon but serious disease and adolescents are at increased risk. In recent years, rates of invasive meningococcal disease caused by meningococcal W and meningococcal Y strains have increased across Australia.

The ACT Government is taking proactive action to protect adolescents and the community from meningococcal disease by recommending immunisation against meningococcal A, C, W and Y strains.

FAQs for the meningococcal catch-up program

Immunisation Newsletter

Immunisation Newsletter Issue 3 2018