Action 3.13

The health service organisation has a risk-based workforce immunisation program that:

a. Is consistent with the current edition of the Australian Immunisation Handbook

b. Is consistent with jurisdictional requirements for vaccine-preventable diseases

c. Addresses specific risks to the workforce and patients

Intent

The health service organisation has a risk-based immunisation program to protect the workforce and patients.

Reflective question

Is the health service organisation’s immunisation program consistent with the national immunisation guidelines and state or territory requirements?

Key tasks

  • Review the organisation’s immunisation program to ensure that it is consistent with the current edition of the Australian Immunisation Handbook1 and state or territory requirements for vaccination
  • Ensure that policies, procedures and protocols are in place to cover employer and employee responsibilities for managing occupational risks for vaccine-preventable diseases.

Strategies for improvement

Hospitals

Conduct a risk assessment to establish consistency of the organisation’s workforce immunisation program with the current edition of the Australian Immunisation Handbook and state or territory requirements.

Ensure that the policies, procedures and protocols for workforce immunisation include:

  • Employer and employee responsibilities for managing occupational risks for vaccine-preventable diseases
  • Relevant aspects relating to the organisation’s infection prevention and control program
  • A statement of the risks in the organisation and how the risks are to be managed, including identifying high-risk areas and at-risk members of the workforce
  • How the program aligns with the organisation’s workplace health and safety program
  • Identification of appropriately qualified or trained personnel to manage the program
  • Vaccination requirements for the workforce (including students and contractors) before they start work in the organisation
  • The need to maintain current vaccination records for the workforce and a process to view these records, if required
  • How information about relevant vaccine-preventable diseases is provided to the workforce and patients
  • A documented management process for vaccine refusal that includes reducing the risk to members of the workforce, and reducing the risk of a healthcare worker transmitting disease to vulnerable patients.
Day Procedure Services

Conduct a risk assessment to measure consistency of the organisation’s workforce immunisation program with the current edition of the Australian Immunisation Handbook1 and state or territory requirements.

Ensure that the policies, procedures and protocols for workforce immunisation include:

  • Employer and employee responsibilities for managing occupational risks for vaccine-preventable diseases
  • Relevant aspects relating to the organisation’s infection prevention and control program
  • A statement of the risks in the organisation and how the risks are to be managed, including identifying high-risk areas and at-risk members of the workforce
  • How the program aligns with the organisation’s workplace health and safety program
  • Identification of appropriately qualified or trained personnel to manage the program
  • The vaccination requirements for the workforce (including students and contractors) before they start work in the organisation
  • The need to maintain current vaccination records for the workforce and a process to gain access to these records, if required
  • How information about relevant vaccine-preventable diseases is provided to the workforce and patients
  • A documented management process for vaccine refusal that includes reducing the risk to members of the workforce, and reducing the risk of a healthcare worker transmitting disease to vulnerable patients.

It may be appropriate for some day procedure services to work with the group corporate structure to identify the available resources within their organisation for workforce immunisation.

Examples of evidence

Select only examples currently in use:

  • Policy documents about risk-based workplace immunisation
  • Audit results of workforce vaccination compliance
  • Committee and meeting records in which workforce vaccination compliance was discussed
  • Communication with the workforce about workforce vaccination requirements
  • Workforce vaccination schedule
  • Workforce vaccination records.
MPS & Small Hospitals

MPSs or small hospitals that are part of a local health network or private hospital group should use the established workforce immunisation program.

Small hospitals that are not part of a local health network or private hospital group should:

  • Develop or review the organisation’s immunisation program to ensure that it is consistent with the current edition of the Australian Immunisation Handbook1 and state or territory requirements for vaccination
  • Ensure that policies, procedures and protocols are in place to cover employer and employee responsibilities for managing occupational risks for vaccine-preventable diseases.
Last updated 3rd July, 2018 at 05:12pm
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References

Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation. The Australian immunisation handbook. 10th ed. Canberra: Australian Government Department of Health; 2017 (accessed Oct 2017).