ACWY Vaccine

Information about the ACWY vaccine.

The Federal Government has now made accessible the ACWY vaccine to ALL 12 month olds and 14-19 year olds in Australia. This will protect those under the age of 5 years (who are considered the most vulnerable to the disease) from contracting it. Teenagers who are the biggest carriers of the disease will also be protected. However, THIS VACCINE WILL NOT PROTECT YOU AGAINST MENINGOCOCCAL B, you will need a separate script for this, which you will have to pay for.

There are programs throughout the country that offer the ACWY vaccine for other age groups. The Western Australian Government has a FREE ACWY vaccine for 1- 4 year olds. Tasmania vaccinates between 6 weeks and 20 years.  The Northern Territory vaccinates between 12 months and 19 years.  South Australia has the FREE ACWY for 12 month olds and 14-19 year olds as well as  Meningococcal B  for 6 weeks- 4 years  and 15-21 years.
The 14 to 19 year age group is considered to be the most socially active group of all children. They are normally involved in travelling in large sporting groups, dance parties and prolonged social gatherings. They are more likely to be involved in deep kissing, sharing drinks, and cigarettes. Meningococcal and meningitis can also be caught through people sneezing and coughing on each other.

In recent years we have seen an increase in the “W” strain which has led to the hospitalisation of people, and unfortunately the death in some.

You will be vaccinated against 4 potentially deadly strains of meningococcal known as Meningococcal A, C, W -135 and Y. It is ONE dose that you will receive and will last for approximately 5 years.
Common in 1 in 10 people

  • Pain, redness or swelling around the injection site.
  • Loss of appetite
  • Fever
  • Drowsiness or feeling tired
  • Headache
  • Diarrhoea, vomiting, or nausea
  • Bruising at the injection site.

As with all vaccines given by injection there is a very small risk of a serious allergic reaction. This usually happens within hours, but may occur days to weeks after vaccination. If any of the following happen tell your doctor or nurse immediately or go to hospital.

Firstly, you can get it at your GP for free. If you are at university you will be able to get your immunisation at the health clinic if there is one, or if you are at school, you can get it through the school based immunisation program. If you are at TAFE or work,  you can  get it through your GP.

Central Immunisation Clinic
16 Rheola Street West Perth
9321 1312.

You can also now get your free vaccination at your local GP. Call first to ensure they bulk bill you.

All 14 -19 year old Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islanders can be vaccinated through their GP or  Aboriginal Medical Services.

Derbarl Yerrigan Health Service
156 Wittenoom Street
East Perth WA 6004
(08) 9421 3888

You will be asked to show your Medicare card and perhaps some form of identification.
You will be asked to produce your Medicare card and perhaps some form of identification.
It is estimated the ACWY vaccine stays in the body for about 5 years.
This vaccine will NOT protect you from other strains. It is time to get the ACWY vaccine and also consider the Men B vaccine as well.
The Meningococcal B vaccine is also available, but it is not free. If you are wanting to be vaccinated against Men B at the same time, it is advised you speak to your doctor first, as to whether you should have this vaccination at the same time.
Click here for the signs and symptoms of meningitis and meningococcal. Please do NOT wait for a rash to occur before seeking medical advice, as a rash doesn’t always appear.
If you suspect you or a loved one might have this disease seek medical treatment urgently! Do not waste time, as this is a disease that can kill within 24 hours. If you are unwell please ask your doctor "Could it be meningococcal or meningitis?"
Please look around our website, as it contains a variety of information on the disease but if you would like to speak to someone or receive our brochures and pamphlets, please call between 8am – 4pm (WST) Monday - Friday on 1800 250 223.