Date published: 
25 June 2018
Type: 
News
Intended audience: 
Health professionals

From 1 July 2018 there will be changes to the childhood immunisation schedule designed to improve protection against meningococcal, pneumococcal and Haemophilus influenzae type b diseases. 

The changes are being implemented following recommendations from the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation and other clinical experts.

Changes to early childhood vaccinations include:

  • Infant pneumococcal vaccination (Prevenar 13®) will now be given at age 2 months (from 6 weeks), 4 and 12 months instead of at 2 months (from 6 weeks), 4 and 6 months.
    • Children at a higher risk will continue to receive this vaccine at age 2 months (from 6 weeks), 4, 6 and 12 months as recommended prior to this change.
  • The combined meningococcal C conjugate-Haemophilus influenzae type b (Menitorix®) vaccine currently scheduled at age 12 months will no longer be given. Instead, it will be replaced by 2 vaccines:
    • A dose of meningococcal ACWY conjugate vaccine (Nimenrix®) given at age 12 months.
    • A dose of monovalent Haemophilus influenzae type b (ActHIB®) vaccine at age 18 months – this is the 4th Hib- containing vaccine in the NIP schedule and serves as a booster dose.

Resources for vaccination providers include:

Resources for parents and carers include:

For further information about meningococcal, pneumococcal and Haemophilus influenzae type b please refer to the relevant chapters in the online Australian Immunisation Handbook or contact your local state or territory health service: https://beta.health.gov.au/health-topics/immunisation/contacts