Boosting patient protection in varicella
A free online accredited CPD program for Australian Healthcare Professionals
Epidemiology of Varicella in Australia
Varicella vaccines have been licensed in Australia since 1999, however vaccine adoption was low before vaccination was funded under the National Immunisation Program (NIP) in November 2005.
In the 2.5 years following its inclusion on the NIP, there was a 69% decline in varicella hospitalisations in children aged 1.5 to 4 years.
Hospitalisations have also decreased dramatically by 70 to 88%, especially among children from birth to 4 years old. Reductions in hospitalisation rates also occurred in other age groups due to herd immunity.
Dr. Alan Leeb,
DTm&H DCH Dip Fam Med
Illawarra Medical Centre
This activity has been approved by the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners QI&CPD Program.
Total Points: 2 Points (Category 2)
- Recall the current epidemiology of varicella infection in Australia and review the need for varicella vaccination.
- Review the evidence base regarding optimal dosing of varicella vaccine for maximal disease prevention.
- Counsel patients and caregivers regarding when and for whom varicella vaccination is indicated.
Questions answered by our experts, Dr. Alan Leeb, MBBCh, DTm&H DCH Dip Fam Med, FRACGP
- How do you address parents who ask if it is better to get chicken pox naturally?
- What is your clinical experience with the varicella vaccine, particularly with regard to adverse effects in young patients?
- What tips can you give GPs who have patients who are reluctant to vaccinate their children against varicella?