Pharmacists to administer RSV vaccines in QLD

The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) encourages Queensland residents over the age of 60 years to book a respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) vaccine appointment with their local pharmacist, following the addition of the vaccine to the Extended Practice Authority – Pharmacists V5 (EPA) today.

Queensland now joins New South Wales and Victoria as the only jurisdictions in Australia to allow pharmacists to initiate and administer RSV vaccines.

PSA Queensland President Shane MacDonald welcomed the move, saying it was important people protected themselves against infectious diseases ahead of winter.

“We know that older adults with chronic medical conditions including asthma, COPD and diabetes are at an even higher risk of hospitalisation or death because of RSV,” Mr MacDonald said.

“It just makes sense to make the vaccine as accessible as possible, to as many eligible people as possible.

“PSA has been advocating for this vaccine to be added the Extended Practice Authority for some time, and we’re really encouraged see the Queensland Government taking action.”

PSA National President, Associate Professor Fei Sim FPS, called on other Australian jurisdictions to follow lead.

“ATAGI has issued three significant statements about vaccination – for COVID-19, influenza and, for the first time, RSV. Now we have a vaccine that is recommended, it’s important to make sure people can access it from all their regular vaccine providers, including pharmacists.”

RSV vaccines are currently not funded by the National Immunisation Program.

The Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation recommends people over the age of 75 years receive RSV vaccination as well as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged over 60 years and those aged over 60 with medical conditions that increase the risk of severe disease due to RSV. All other people over the age of 60 years are also eligible for RSV vaccination.

 

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