A higher quality vaccine is now available to reduce the risk of pneumococcal disease

Injection in arm by person wearing blue latex gloves 

Pneumococcal disease is caused by the bacterium, Streptococcus pneumoniae.

The infection can cause milder symptoms such as sinusitis or ear infections. More serious complications include inflammation of the brain (meningitis), inflammation of the lungs (pneumonia) or a blood infection (septicaemia).

Now a higher quality, longer lasting vaccine called Prevenar 13 is available on the National Immunisation Program schedule.

It  is recommended for people aged 70 years and over, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 50 years and over, and people of any age with certain risk conditions increasing their chance for contracting pneumococcal disease. These people are more likely to become seriously ill or die from pneumococcal disease.

Further information can be found on the Better Health Channel

You should speak with your doctor or your immunisation provider if you think you are at risk, and to discuss the pneumococcal vaccine recommendations.

Read more about your Immunisation HALO.