SAEFVIC

SAEFVIC (Surveillance of Adverse Events Following Vaccination In the Community) is a public health partnership initiative of the Victorian Immunisation Program funded by the Department of Health, Victoria. It was established in 2007 and now comprises of two units at two sites:

  • Clinical - Murdoch Childrens Research Institute.
  • Epidemiology and Signal Investigation - Monash Health & University

SAEFVIC is a vaccine safety service and clinical immunisation research team, focusing on vaccine safety and surveillance. This includes management of adverse events following immunisation (AEFI), vaccine-preventable disease research and immunisation education.

SAEFVIC is a national leader in vaccine safety. The team comprises of immunisation nurses, administrative staff, research staff, an epidemiologist, statistician, data manager and clinicians.  It is a specialist vaccine safety service that helps immunisation providers report and manage both children and adults who have had an AEFI. Our Outpatient clinics are based at The Royal Children's Hospital (Parkville) and Monash Health (Clayton). SAEFVIC also provides regional clinical support via TeleHealth. Any trends in reports are notified and investigated quickly in close liaison with Victorian and national health authorities, such as the Therapeutic Goods Adminsitration

SAEFVIC clinical research includes surveillance and clinical studies.  Surveillance projects incorporate active and passive studies, including involvement in national collaborative networks, such as the AusVaxSafety and PAEDS (Paediatric Active Enhanced Surveillance) networks. These networks focus on conditions of public health importance and support the National Immunisation Program.

We also have National Health and Medical Research Centre (NHMRC)-funded projects, such as vaccine safety research into febrile seizures. SAEFVIC’s education activities include the Melbourne Vaccine Education Centre.

Group Members: 
A/Prof Jim Buttery
Role: 
Group Leader
Georgina Lewis
Role: 
Clinical Manager
Hazel Clothier
Role: 
Epidemiologist
Alissa McMinn
Role: 
Research Nurse Manager
Annette Alafaci
Role: 
Research Assistant
Donna Lee
Role: 
Research Nurse
Gowri Selvaraj
Role: 
Research Assistant
Margie Gibson
Role: 
Research Nurse
Mee Lee Easton
Role: 
Statistician
Victoria Scott
Role: 
Administrative Assistant
Vick Wilby
Role: 
Administrative Assistant
Lois Tham
Role: 
Administrative Assistant
Kate Brownlee
Role: 
Research Nurse
Adele Harris
Role: 
Research Nurse
Jock Lawrie
Role: 
Statistician
Mel Addison
Role: 
Research Nurse
Rachael McGuire
Role: 
Education Nurse Coordinator
RCH Medical Staff Immunisation
Dr Margie Danchin
Role: 
Paediatrician
Dr Kirsten Perrett
Role: 
Paediatrician
Dr Teresa Lazzaro
Role: 
Paediatrician
Dr Daniel Golshevsky
Role: 
Paediatrician
Monash Health Medical staff AE
Dr Tony Korman
Role: 
Director, Monash Infectious Diseases
Dr Dave Burgner
Role: 
Paediatric Infectious Diseases consultant
Dr Michelle Giles
Role: 
Infectious Diseases Physician
Kirsten Mitchell
Role: 
Research Nurse

The Melbourne Vaccine Education Centre (MVEC)  
MVEC was launched in February 2014 as a collaboration between the Melbourne Children’s campus and Monash Health. It is a web based initiative, providing up to date immunisation information for healthcare professionals, parents and the public. It aims to address common queries around vaccines and to promote the benefits of immunisation for both children and adults. It provides an A-Z list of immunisation references as well as an up to date schedule app for smart phones. MVEC runs annual education programs such as the Clinical Vaccinology Update and the Travel Vaccinology Update. Click on header to proceed to the MVEC website.

AusVaxSafety
AusVaxSafety is a national, Commonwealth Department of Health funded, enhanced surveillance system to monitor adverse events following various immunisations (presently pertussis and influenza vaccinations are being monitored). The MCRI AusVaxSafety team uses a data extraction tool called Vaxtracker. After consenting to participation, parents receive an SMS text message three-days following routine vaccination asking if their child had experienced any kind of reaction post vaccination. Reactions are then followed up appropriately as per Victoria’s protocol for adverse events following immunisation. Each week, data from all reports are combined and analysed. Surveillance under AusVaxSafety commenced in March 2014 and up-to-date results on this important vaccine safety initiative are detailed on the website. Click on header to proceed to the AusVaxSafety website.

AEFI-CAN (Adverse event following immunisation- clinical assessment network)
AEFI-CAN is a Commonwealth Department of Health funded, national clinical assessment network coordinated by SAEFVIC. It is a formal collaboration between state-based vaccine safety clinics, participating paediatric clinicians and the Therapeutics Goods Administration (TGA). It was initiated to help improve and develop consistency in the approach to surveillance of, and clinical responses to, adverse events following immunisation. The pilot focused on the introduction of the Human Papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine and adverse events following this launch. In 2016 AEFI-CAN expanded to cover all National Immunisation Program vaccines and all other approved vaccines.

PAEDS (Paediatric Active Enhanced Disease Surveillance)
Is a national collaboration  using hospital-based active surveillance to identify and investigate serious childhood conditions of public health importance, particularly vaccine-preventable diseases and adverse events following immunisations. The aims of PAEDS are:

  • To actively collect detailed information that isn’t available from other surveillance systems, about children hospitalised with serious childhood conditions of public health importance
  • To inform vaccination policy and practice, including vaccine safety
  • To improve child health outcomes.

PAEDS is funded by the Australian Government Department of Health with contributions from the state health departments. Funding from external sources such as NHMRC grants, also supplement certain surveillance activities.

Conditions of interest include:

  • Acute Flaccid Paralysis
  • Acute Childhood Encephalitis
  • Intussusception
  • Pertussis
  • Varicella and Herpes Zoster
  • Invasive Group A Streptococcus
  • Invasive Meningococcal Disease

Further information can be found at www.paeds.edu.au


Febrile Seizures Following vaccination in children: What is the long term clinical and developmental outcome?
This is multi-centre NHMRC funded project conducted at Murdoch Childrens and The Royal Children's Hospital; The Epilepsy Research Centre, VIC; The Children’s Hospital at Westmead, NSW; Women’s and Children’s Hospital, SA; Princess Margaret Hospital, WA.

This study aims to i) determine the clinical and developmental outcome of children who had a FS when they were aged 2 years or younger and ii) look for specific genetic markers that may be linked to why the child had a FS.

TestOv Pneumo (Evaluation of the effectiveness of the 13-Valent Pneumococcal Conjugate vaccine against pneumococcal pneumonia in children)

TestOv Pneumo is a national, multi-site, NHMRC funded, prospective case control study to evaluate the efficacy of the 13-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine against pneumococcal pneumonia. The aims of the study are:

  • To evaluate the effectiveness of the 13-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (introduced to NIP in 2011) for preventing hospitalisation for streptococcal pneumonia (SP) and all cause pneumonia.
  • To investigate SP non-vaccine serotype replacement
  • To determine the contribution of SP to complicated & uncomplicated pneumonia