The Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI) has released early advice to support vaccination providers ahead of the 2022 influenza season in its Statement on the administration of seasonal influenza vaccines in 2022.
It is expected that the lower exposure to influenza virus and lower levels of influenza vaccine coverage compared to previous years, combined with the WA border opening could lead to a possible resurgence of influenza in 2022.
Influenza and COVID-19 vaccination
ATAGI has advised that influenza vaccines can be co-administered (on the same day) with a COVID-19 vaccine.
Subject to the availability of influenza vaccines, co-administration with COVID-19 booster vaccines could be a prompt for influenza vaccination.
Timing of vaccination
The highest level of protection occurs in the first three to four months following vaccination. Annual vaccination should ideally occur before the onset of each influenza season. This is usually from June to September in most parts of Australia but may be atypical this year. Vaccinating from April provides protection before the peak season.
Eligibility for 2022 influenza vaccines through the National Immunisation Program (NIP)
Eligibility for influenza vaccines under the NIP remains unchanged for 2022 and includes:
- Children from 6 months to less than 5 years of age
- Adults aged 65 years and over
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 6 months and over
- Pregnant women (during any stage of pregnancy)
- People aged 6 months and over with medical conditions which increase the risk of complications.
The WA State Program also provides influenza vaccinations to primary school children (aged from 5 years to students in Year 6).
See also the Influenza Immunisation HealthPathway.
Register for the online WA Department of Health 2022 Influenza Update
The Communicable Disease Control Directorate (CDCD) Immunisation Program is providing a free, virtual update, Wednesday 23 March for all WA immunisation providers.
The session will cover a general overview of the influenza disease trends and vaccine. You will also learn about the WA Department of Health 2022 State-wide Community Influenza Vaccination Program, vaccine brands, vaccine ordering processes, and promotional activities.