Communicating with people who are unvaccinated against COVID-19

This resource provides a brief summary of perspectives on COVID-19 vaccines from unvaccinated adults living in Australia who were interviewed in late 2021. Informed by these findings, social science researchers at NCIRS and the University of New South Wales, Sydney developed recommendations to help improve communication between health authorities, providers, unvaccinated individuals and their friends and families.

Access this resource here

Factors influencing COVID-19 vaccine uptake - a guide

NCIRS has developed an evidence-based guide highlighting factors that may facilitate or act as barriers to people's acceptance of the COVID-19 vaccines. This guide can be used to communicate with patients to address their questions and concerns and to optimise COVID-19 vaccine uptake.

Access the guide here

Supporting conversations about vaccinations with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people

This page is for immunisation providers (GPs, nurses, pharmacists) providing vaccinations to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families.

The purpose of this page is to provide you with information and resources that help you to have supportive, culturally appropriate vaccination conversations with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families. While we focus here on influenza vaccination, the principles can be applied to other vaccinations.

This information and these resources have been designed by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander researchers and health providers in collaboration with the NCIRS Social Science Team, and are informed by research with immunisation providers working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families.

Access this resource here

Sharing Knowledge About Immunisation (SKAI)

Sharing Knowledge About Immunisation (SKAI) is a is a source of helpful, credible and respectful information that has been designed to support conversations about vaccination between community members and healthcare professionals. Access SKAI resources here.

Questions about vaccination

The Questions about vaccination publication from the Australian Government Department of Health provides answers to many common questions about vaccination. It is designed to help parents find out more about vaccines and the most recent evidence about their safety and effectiveness, and to help doctors answer questions from their patients.

HPV vaccine safety

"Is the HPV vaccine really safe" is a fact sheet about the safety of the HPV vaccine that has been developed by SKAI - Sharing Knowledge About Immunisation. It provides information about the need for the HPV vaccine, the effectiveness of the HPV vaccine and common questions about the HPV vaccine.

Download the fact sheet from the Australian Government Department of Health website here.

MMR decision aid

The MMR decision aid is an interactive tool developed by NCIRS to help parents make informed decisions about whether to immunise their child with the MMR vaccine.

The decision aid:

  • provides parents with information about measles, mumps and rubella

  • incorporates relevant risk information in numerical and graphical format

  • discusses vaccine risks and benefits

  • assists in values clarification.

Dealing with requests for vaccination exemption

There are few valid reasons to sign an Immunisation Medical Exemption form. It is important that general practitioners (GPs) understand what these are, and how to manage common vaccine concerns that may contribute to exemption requests.

'To sign or not to sign: dealing with requests for vaccination exemption' written by Dr Frank Beard and Dr Nicholas Wood of NCIRS and published in Medicine Today (April 2017, Volume 18, Issue 4) is a guide for GPs on what the true medical contraindications to vaccination are and what constitutes adequate evidence of natural immunity. It is also offers practice points on how to recognise and manage common concerns, including those about adverse events after vaccination, that may contribute to parents’ requests for completion of exemption forms.

Please note: Since this article was written, relevant legislation has been amended so that now, in addition to GPs, the following practitioners are able to notify a medical exemption to vaccination to the AIR:

  • paediatricians

  • public health physicians

  • infectious diseases physicians

  • clinical immunologists.


Last updated November 2023