Healthy living

Meningococcal ACWY vaccine

  • Meningococcal is a rare but life threatening disease.
  • A meningococcal vaccine program is available for people aged 15-19 years of age.
  • Vaccines will be delivered through schools, community health centres and immunisation clinics.
What is the meningococcal vaccine?

The meningococcal vaccine available in the current immunisation program protects against strains A, C, W and Y.

The Meningococcal immunisation program was launched in response to a recent increase in meningococcal infection caused by a particular type of the bacteria, ‘serogroup W’.

The conjugate meningococcal ACWY vaccine Nimenrix ® supplied in Australia by Pfizer is used in the current meningococcal immunisation program for 15 to 19 year olds.

Who should have the vaccine?

Young people aged 15 to 19 years are eligible to receive the free vaccine through the current meningococcal immunisation program.

Others who should consider having a meningococcal vaccine include:

  • People who plan to travel or live in parts of the world where meningococcal disease is common, such as parts of Africa, or people participating in mass international gatherings such as the Hajj in Mecca. Some countries require provide evidence of vaccination for entry visas.  
  • Laboratory personnel who frequently handle Neisseria Meningitis
  • Household or sexual contacts of a case.
  • People who have medical conditions associated with an increased risk of invasive meningococcal disease (IMD) such as:
    • defects in or deficiency of complement components, including factor H, factor D or properdin deficiency
    • current or future treatment with eculizumab (a monoclonal antibody directed against complement component C5)
    • functional or anatomical asplenia
    • HIV infection, regardless of stage of disease or CD4+ count
    • haematopoietic stem cell transplant

People considering immunisation should seek advice from their local doctor or a travel doctor.

Who is the vaccine provided free for in the Western Australia state wide program?

The meningococcal ACWY vaccine is being offered free of charge to people aged 15-19 years of age.

This age group has some of the highest rates of meningococcal carriage and illness. Once  infected, they can transmit the bacteria to people who are at increased risk of infection, including young children.

It is expected that providing the meningococcal ACWY vaccine to this age group will reduce the spread of this potentially life-threatening infection in WA

Your school or immunisation provider will give you a consent form for yourself or your child which you will be required to complete prior to vaccination.

Is the meningococcal ACWY vaccine safe and effective?

Studies have shown that the effectiveness of the meningococcal ACWY vaccine is between 80 to 85 per cent in adolescents.

Meningococcal ACWY vaccination programs have been implemented in adolescents aged 13-15 years in the UK since 2015, and adolescents aged 11-12 years in the US since 2005, and the vaccine has been found to be safe and effective.

How is the vaccine given?

The meningococcal vaccine is given through an injection in the upper arm.

Most people will need one dose, but those with certain medical conditions may require an additional dose.

Where can I get vaccinated?

Years 10 to 12 students

In schools. Schools will send out consent forms prior to immunisation day.

Individuals who miss the school immunisation day, are 18 to 19 years of age or other age-eligible people not in school

  • Some university health centres (university students)
  • General practitioner (GP)
  • Local community health centre (metropolitan areas)
  • Central immunisation service (metropolitan area)
  • Public health unit (regional areas)

Immunisation clinics details are listed below.

All 15 to 19 year old Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander persons

Vaccines are available throughout 2017 at Aboriginal Medical Services (external site).

In 2018 and 2019, the program will target incoming Year 10 students only.

Those not eligible for the state wide program (ages outside 15-19 years) may purchase the vaccine privately from their GP or Aboriginal Medical Service.

Central Immunisation Clinic

  • 8.30am to 4.30pm, Monday to Friday
  • 4.30pm to 6.00pm, 1st and 3rd Thursday of each month

Phone: 9321 1312
Email: centimm@health.wa.gov.au
Address: 16 Rheola Street, West Perth WA 6005

Metropolitan immunisation clinics (community health centres)

View the list of metro clinics (PDF 186KB).

Local councils

City of Bayswater (external site)

City of Joondalup (external site)

City of Wanneroo (external site)

Regional public health units

WA Country Health Service (WACHS)

Meningococcal ACWY immunisation program contacts

Central Immunisation Clinic

Email: centimm@health.wa.gov.au
Phone: (08) 9321 1312 (8:30am - 4:30pm, Monday to Friday)

WA Country Health Service

Local councils

Or contact your GP.

More information

Download meningococcal disease fact sheet (PDF 280KB).

For vaccination information you can contact your local immunisation provider or public health unit.

Metropolitan Perth

Central Immunisation Clinic

  • 8.30am to 4.30pm, Monday to Friday
  • 4.30pm to 6.00pm, 1st and 3rd Thursday of each month

Phone: 9321 1312
Email: centimm@health.wa.gov.au
Address: 16 Rheola Street, West Perth WA 6005

Metropolitan immunisation clinics (community health centres)

View the list of metro clinics (PDF 186KB).

Local councils

City of Bayswater (external site)

City of Joondalup (external site)

City of Wanneroo (external site)

Regional public health units

WA Country Health Service (WACHS)

Where to get help

Seek medical advice early if you think you or your child has meningococcal disease:

  • See your doctor.
  • Visit a GP after hours.
  • Ring healthdirect on 1800 022 222.

Acknowledgements

Public Health


This publication is provided for education and information purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional medical care. Information about a therapy, service, product or treatment does not imply endorsement and is not intended to replace advice from your healthcare professional. Readers should note that over time currency and completeness of the information may change. All users should seek advice from a qualified healthcare professional for a diagnosis and answers to their medical questions.

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