|Title:||Health Care Worker Immunisation Guidelines|
|Document ID:||Operational Circular OP 1740/04|
|Date of issue:||Thursday, 15 January 2004|
|Status:||NO LONGER APPLICABLE|
|Description:||The purpose of this document is to describe the DoH policy for the routine immunisation of health care workers (HCWs) including student HCWs.|
|Applicable to:||All health services|
|Period of effect:||from 15 January 2004|
|Authorised by:||Dr Gary Dowse, Acting Director, Communicable Disease Control Directorate, 07-Jan-2004|
|Print version:||View print version|
|To be read in conjunction with:||
Health Care Worker Immunisation Guidelines
The purpose of this document is to describe the Department of Health's (DOH) policy for the routine immunisation of Health Care Workers (HCWs), including student HCWs.
Health care workers (HCWs) may acquire vaccine-preventable diseases (VPDs) from patients or other HCWs and transmit these VPDs to other patients or HCWs.
In addition to the use of infection control precautions, immunisation of HCWs helps to prevent transmission of VPDs between patients and HCWs.
Health Care Services (HCSs) should ensure that all HCWs, including student HCWs, are fully vaccinated against key VPDs (e.g. hepatitis B, measles) before they come in contact with potentially infectious patients or blood or other body substances.
In addition, some HCWs have more exposure to certain VPDs than others and should also be vaccinated against these additional VPDs.
HCSs should maintain a database that:
A nominated doctor should take responsibility for staff immunisation. If written standing orders for vaccines are signed by the nominated doctor, then a trained nurse may administer those vaccines. Administration of BCG vaccine should only be done by a doctor or nurse with appropriate training and experience.
The Health Care Service should provide HCW screening, testing and database maintenance.
The DOH currently provides the following vaccines and items for the vaccination of HCWs:
Consent must be obtained and recorded for each HCW screening test or vaccination. Verbal consent is sufficient provided that it is recorded by the interviewer that consent was obtained.
If a recommended screening test or vaccination is refused by a HCW, then this refusal must be recorded on the HCW database.
Every HCW should maintain a personal screening test result and vaccination record. Adult Immunisation Record Cards can be obtained from the hospital or by phoning the DOH on 9222 2056.
Direct Care Staff
HCWs who are likely to have close physical contact with patients during the course of their employment, should be fully immunised against hepatitis B, influenza, measles, mumps, rubella, varicella, diphtheria, and poliomyelitis.
HCWs should be screened for tuberculosis according to Operational Circular OP 1553/02, Tuberculosis and Health Care Workers.
HCWs who have an increased risk of occupational exposure to hepatitis A should be fully immunised against hepatitis A.
HCWs who work with young infants (e.g. maternity, nursery staff) should be fully immunised against pertussis.
Laboratory and Research Staff
Laboratory and research staff should be immunised against a variety of diseases which include hepatitis B, influenza, measles, mumps, rubella, varicella, diphtheria, and poliomyelitis. In addition, they should be vaccinated against other vaccine preventable diseases that they may be exposed to in their specific workplace, e.g. meningococcal disease, hepatitis A, typhoid, Q Fever, rabies, Japanese Encephalitis, and plague.
See the National Health and Medical Research Council's Australian Immunisation Handbook 8th Edition, 20032, for more information about vaccines.
Dr Gary Dowse
BIBLIOGRAPHY / REFERENCES:
This circular last updated: Thursday, 15 January 2004 at 12:00am