COVID-19 Vaccination information and resources
Advice on this page will be updated as the situation evolves and new or changed information comes to hand. New information will be highlighted. You should continue to return to this website for the latest information rather than printing/ storing local copies of fact or information sheets. Note: The information on this page is intended for clinicians only.
COVID-19 Vaccination Preparation Pack
The PHN has developed a Vaccination Preparation Pack to assist general practitioners, practice nurses and practice managers in delivering a successful mass vaccination program. It also contains checklists which can be used as evidence for accreditation and quality improvement activities.
- Part One: Preparing your practice policies and protocols [Word] [PDF]
- Part Two: Internal preparation for your team [Word] [PDF]
- Part Three: Identifying eligible patients and planning the patient vaccination journey [Word] [PDF]
- Part Four: Preparing and implementing a vaccination clinic [Word] [PDF]
- Checklist to support non-vaccinating practices: Preparing your patients for COVID-19 vaccination at an alternative location [Word] [PDF]
COVID-19 Vaccination Suitability Assessment MBS Guides
- COVID-19 Vaccination Suitability Assessment
- COVID-19 Vaccination Suitability Assessment Non-VR GP (MDRAP and PEP or 19AB Exemption)
Vaccine provider communication kit
11 October 2021
Expiring COVID-19 vaccines
The PHN's team of primary health care officers (PHCO) can help general practice coordinate the re-distribution of excess and expiring COVID-19 vaccines.
If you suspect your vaccines may be at risk of expiring, please contact your PHCO as soon as possible - this may allow other practices to consider holding off on future orders and instead utilise available stock. You are also welcome to contact other practices nearby to discuss transfer opportunities prior to contacting your PHCO.
If you are arranging your own re-distribution of excess doses, the National Vaccine Storage Guidelines ‘Strive for 5’ document provides information and advice for vaccine storage management for Australian immunisation service providers.
Tips to avoid excess doses:
- Consider contacting nearby practices (if applicable) to identify any possible local solution.
- If you experience a situation where you have multiple doses which are at risk of expiring, review the practices current ordering system and the short term future bookings/ demands and adjust.
- Consider holding off future ordering until sufficient bookings are made to cover the minimum stock booking requirement.
- Consider sharing your ordering cycle/s with other practices to help manage stock.
Queensland Adult Specialist Immunisation Service
The Queensland Adult Specialist Immunisation Service (QASIS) is a state-wide service (based at Metro North Hospital and Health Service) for those aged over 16 years requiring consideration for hospital-based COVID-19 vaccination for those with significant allergies, anaphylaxis or side effects to COVID-19 vaccination.
Referral information is available at Vaccination referrals - Metro North Health.
The service will work with local HHSs to provide support for vaccination requirements close to home so patients don’t necessarily need to travel to Brisbane.
Third dose for immunocompromised patients
On Friday, the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI) released a statement recommending a third dose of COVID-19 vaccine as part of the primary course in individuals who are severely immunocompromised, detailed in this Provider Bulletin.
FAQs for vaccinating children 12 and over
The National Centre for Immunisation Research and Surveillance (NCIRS) has developed a new resource answering some of the most frequently asked questions about COVID-19 in children, vaccines available in Australia, vaccine safety and schooling.
Updated: COVID-19 vaccination during pregnancy
COVID-19 vaccination at any stage of pregnancy is currently recommended by ATAGI, RANZCOG and Queensland Health. Current advice for health professionals is now available at:
- Recorded Information Session for Health Professionals - Current evidence and recommendations. (Wed 22 Sept)
- Updated COVID-19 vaccines and pregnancy, fertility and breastfeeding - Queensland Health website
- New Inservice presentation: COVID-19 vaccination and pregnancy
- Updated Queensland Clinical Guideline: Maternity Care for mothers and babies during the COVID-19 pandemic
- COVID-19 vaccination: shared decision-making guide for women who are pregnant, breastfeeding or planning pregnancy (Australian Department of Health)
- The Australian College of Midwives has also developed tools to assist midwives when they speak with women about COVID-19 vaccination.
Updated: vaccine coverage map
The Health Geographics website has been updated, providing the latest vaccination coverage by Statistical Area Level 3 (SA3) using data published by the Australian Department of Health. The maps show the percentage of doses given in each SA3 and can be refined to first and second doses.
Reporting adverse events
The Queensland Chief Medical Officer, Dr Jeanette Young, has published this letter reminding clinicians and vaccination providers of their obligation to report serious, unexpected or uncommon adverse events following immunisation (AEFI).
Adverse event (AEFI) lodgement and Vaccination Record Cards
In order to complete an AEFI (adverse event following immunisation) report, the reporter requires details of the vaccine and the date it was given. While these details can be found in the patient’s medical record or on the Australian Immunisation Register, providing these details to the person vaccinated at the time of vaccination would be ideal.
In order to assist timely and accurate AEFI reporting, vaccination providers are encouraged to provide patients with the following information:
- Vaccine brand
- Dose (e.g. 1 or 2)
- Batch number
- Date given
- Time given
We acknowledge the ongoing supply and logistics issues with the delivery of Vaccination Record Cards, and until these issues are resolved, practices should provide this information to patients in an alternative manner.
As the Queensland COVID-19 vaccine program is extended, patients may present in primary care because of (potential) adverse events following immunisation (AEFI).
Identifying an adverse event following immunisation (AEFI), or potential AEFI, is at the discretion of each individual clinician exercising clinical judgement.
The latest advice from SHECC is that there is no definition that can provide perfect clarity but every AEFI should be reported, irrespective of its severity.
Two new forms have been added to the Queensland Health Adverse Event Following Immunisation (AEFI) page:
- Queensland Health Vaccine Control Centre post COVID-19 vaccination suspected anaphylaxis follow-up form, developed to capture details that are aligned to the Brighton Collaboration’s Anaphylaxis case definition. It should be used in addition to a Queensland Health COVID-19 vaccine Adverse Event Following Immunisation form.
- Therapeutic Goods Administration Adverse Events of Special Interest. TheTGA closely monitors for specific adverse events known as ‘adverse events of special interest’ listed in this document.
Thrombosis with Thrombocytopenia Syndrome (TTS)
Joint statement from ATAGI and THANZ
ATAGI and THANZ have published a joint statement on Thrombosis with Thrombocytopenia Syndrome (TTS) and the use of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine. The statement provides greater clarity on the nature of TTS and narrows the conditions determined to be contraindications for use of the vaccine
Advertising guidelines for COVID-19 vaccine brands
The Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) recently published a reminder of the regulations around advertising prescription medicines, including the tradename and/or active ingredient of the COVID-19 vaccines or other information that might enable consumers to identify the particular vaccine or the manufacturer.
Queensland Health has confirmed vaccination processes will continue in line with guidance provided in the product information (PI) and issued by ATAGI.
This means people with a history of severe allergies or anaphylaxis should be observed for 30 minutes following vaccination, and other people should continue to be monitored for 15 minutes following vaccination.
There has been no change to ATAGI guidance, to Queensland Health processes, and no change (at this time) to how COVID-19 vaccination services are implemented in general practice from next week.
Say up to date with the latest clinical advice on HealthPathways.
Cold chain breach reporting
Cold chain breaches of COVID-19 vaccines should be reported immediately to the Vaccination Operations Centre (VOC) on 1800 318 208.
COVID-19 vaccinations and allergies
The Australasian Society of Clinical Immunology and Allergy (ASCIA) has released a set of FAQs to answer questions regarding the COVID-19 vaccination in relation to allergy, immunodeficiency and autoimmunity
The Department of Health recently published this useful document answering general questions for vaccine providers.
Health Contact Centre
The Health Contact Centre (HCC) is consumer facing and provides confidential health assessment and information services to Queenslanders 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
The HCC will also assist consumers (who are phase 1a or 1b eligible) gain an appointment with a HHS vaccine hub for the following scenarios:
- Overseas and interstate consumers needing their 2nd dose (not all consumers will align with the national phase roll out)
- Consumers with a medical condition which requires Pfizer vaccine and have documentation from GP or specialist.
- Consumers under 18 years of age to receive Pfizer vaccine.
- Consumers who have a history of anaphylaxis and have documentation from GP or specialist to be vaccinated at hospital
- Consumers with an allergy to ingredient(s) of the Astra Zeneca vaccine and have documentation from GP or specialist
Phone: 3608 5960
The PHN is aware of feedback from across the region that general practices are experiencing increased workload with queries about booking systems, patient eligibility and availability of vaccines.
We have been working hard to share messages via our community newsletter, along with local TV, radio and print publications urging patients to be patient. We will continue to promote the Department's Eligibility Checker as the first source of information, and discouraging media outlets from directing community members to call general practice with queries.
Please contact the PHN if you would like support with media queries.
Script for general practice
The Australian Government has put together this script for general practice to help answer questions from your patients about the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine.
How to answer questions from your patients
We've received requests from some GPs for answers to Frequently Asked Questions that they receive from patients coming in for their COVID-19 vaccination.
This Queensland Health resource offers a list of common questions about COVID-19 vaccination such as:
- How do I know the vaccine is safe?
- What if I suffer from allergies or anaphylaxis – can I still get vaccinated?
- What if I am pregnant or breastfeeding?
Bookmark this page , go to the 'Frequently Asked Questions' dropdown near the bottom of the page and use it as a quick reference for when you are seeing patients for their COVID-19 vaccine.
Addressing vaccine hesitancy
The Australian Government has put together a list of talking points to help GPs address vaccine hesitancy around the use of the AstraZeneca vaccine.
From March 2021, 16 new MBS items became available to enable GPs and suitably qualified health professionals to assess patients for their suitability to receive a COVID-19 vaccine.
The assessment and delivery of the COVID-19 vaccine is free to patients and the MBS items must be bulk billed.
Patients presenting with multiple clinical matters requiring attention should be encouraged to book a separate consultation, and preferably with their usual practice.
Co-claiming is only permitted where another GP service is provided that is unrelated to the vaccine assessment item.
Patients must also be informed if any other service that they receive on the same occasion will be bulk-billed or will attract a co-payment.
The Australian Digital Health Agency has upgraded the My Health Record system with the following enhancements:
- A new immunisation view in the National Provider Portal that supports the Australian Government's COVID-19 vaccination program;
- Improved user settings for consumers;
- A reminder to update emergency contact details for consumers.
Further information and screenshots can be viewed online.
If you have any questions please email email@example.com.
Phase 1B COVID-19 Vaccine Roll-out through Primary Care Providers
Phase 1b FAQs - your questions answered
The PHN has produced this fact sheet with answers to the most commonly asked questions from general practice regarding Phase 1b of the COVID-19 Vaccination Program.
The FAQ was developed with thanks to Brisbane North PHN.
Phase 1b bulletin
Phase 1b patients under 50
The process for Phase 1b-eligible patients under 50 who request the Pfizer vaccine is still yet to be determined. Patients are still able to provide informed consent to receive the AstraZeneca vaccine where the clinical benefit outweighs the potential risks.
Aged care staff eligibility fact sheet
The Department has provided a factsheet outlining the aged care staff who are eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine in phase 1a of the roll-out.
These include all people working at a residential aged care facility who are responsible for resident care, support and services for residents, maintenance and administration, and includes:
- nursing and personal care staff,
- allied health professionals,
- kitchen, cleaning, laundry, garden and office staff.
COVID-19 vaccine roll-out in RACFS
The Department of Health has provided information to assist residential aged care providers plan for the COVID-19 vaccine roll-out in this COVID-19 Vaccine aged care readiness toolkit.
GPs with patients in RACFs
General practitioners and residential aged care facilities are encouraged to start a conversation around patient needs as the COVID-19 vaccination roll-out begins. Some residents will require assistance in obtaining guardian's consent, some patients may need a medical review prior to vaccination, and you may be called upon in case of adverse effects.
Update for FPs visiting RACFs
The Department of Health has published this fact sheet to update residential aged care staff, including GPs who visit RACFs, on how to access a COVID-19 vaccination.
Vaccine dose policy guidance
The Department of Health has published Vaccine Dose Policy Guidance, containing advice on the administration of COVID-19 vaccines in RACFs and management of excess doses, make up doses and alternative access to vaccination.
Record of vaccination
People can access evidence of their COVID-19 vaccines in their immunisation history record through Medicare Online, myGov or the Express Plus Medicare app. Vaccination providers can also print an Immunisation History Statement (IHS) on behalf of their patient.
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People
Information about COVID-19 vaccines for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people
This resource, jointly developed by the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (NACCHO) and NCIRS, provides information about COVID-19 vaccines for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. View the resource here.
Cancer Australia has released information on the COVID-19 vaccines for people affected by cancer.
This includes a set of frequently asked questions (FAQs) about the COVID-19 vaccines and cancer, and links to health professional guidance and research articles.
Clinical Excellence Queensland
Clinical Excellence Queensland has released a new range of COVID-19 vaccine digital resources and explanatory notes containing valuable clinical information, which are also suitable for sharing with your patients. Access and download them here.
Department of Health documents
- After your AstraZeneca vaccination
- Patient information on thrombosis with thrombocytopenia syndrome
- ATAGI provider guide to COVID-19 vaccination of people with immunocompromise
- Clinical guidance on use of COVID-19 vaccine in Australia in 2021
- Consent form (including print friendly version)
- Preparing for COVID-19 vaccination
- Information for immunisation providers on thrombosis with thrombocytopenia syndrome (TTS) following COVID-19 vaccination
- Consent – information for providers: COVID-19 vaccination consent and FAQs
- Information on COVID-19 AstraZeneca vaccine
- Fact sheet: Information for health care providers to help consumers make an informed decision
Flowchart: where to go for help
Our friends at Brisbane North PHN developed this flowchart to help guide general practice to the service, resource or site best fitting to your queries regarding Phase 1b of the the COVID-19 vaccination roll-out, which we have adapted to include our contact information, and local HealthPathways.
- Pfizer - COVID-19 Vaccine expiry label Last updated 20/09/2021
Queensland Government COVID-19 vaccine resources
With the administration of COVID-19 vaccines now imminent, the following Queensland Government resources and information have been updated:
- The COVID-19 vaccine web page has been significantly updated with content and FAQs.
- The asset library has also been updated with resources for healthcare providers, including patient fact sheets, clinical questionnaire, a roadmap, signage and social media tiles.
Queensland Health COVID-19 information for Queensland clinicians
Dr Jillann Farmer, Deputy Director-General, Clinical Excellence Queensland, published a letter inviting clinicians to stay connected with Queensland Health's response to COVID-19 on their dedicated webpage COVID-19 information for Queensland clinicians.
This page hosts the latest available information to assist Queensland clinicians to respond to the evolving COVID-19 situation in Queensland and is updated as new or changed information comes to hand.
RACGP vaccination resources
The RACGP has created a COVID-19 vaccine information page for GPs that will be regularly updated.
Social media posts
The Department of Health has released new social media posts (copy and artwork) as part of their communication materials for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
The COVID-19 vaccination training modules, mandatory for all authorised COVID-19 vaccination providers, are online at covid19vaccinationtraining.org.au.
The training is also available to non-clinical and administration staff who can access the non-clinical modules of the training such as handling, storage and administration.
There have been some queries about the vaccine ingredients. None of the vaccine ingredients are of human or animal origin and there is no food, latex or gelatin in the COVID-19 vaccines that are currently available.
Non-active ingredients of the vaccine (no preservatives are used): L-histidine (an amino acid), L-histidine hydrochloride monohydrate (an amino acid), magnesium chloride hexahydrate (supports many activities inside cells), polysorbate 80 (a stabiliser), ethanol, sucrose, sodium chloride, disodium edetate dihydrate (EDTA, a binding agent), water for injection.
If individuals have had an allergic reaction to other vaccines in the past, it does not mean that they will also be allergic to the COVID-19 vaccines (Australasian Society of Clinical Immunology and Allergy [ASCIA], 2021).