SAEFVIC general support

Reports are only accepted online. Reports via telephone, fax or email will not be accepted. To report an AEFI for yourself or a patient please visit SAEFVIC for reporting guidelines and instructions.

For information on which symptoms following immunisation should be reported refer to SAEFVIC.

Not all reports will receive follow up.  SAEFVIC is a reporting service and not an emergency contact. Hours of operation are Monday – Friday, 9am – 5pm. Anyone who experiences a severe adverse event following immunisation (AEFI) should first seek medical attention from a health professional. For advice on symptoms following COVID-19 vaccines, we encourage callers to contact the Coronavirus Hotline on 1800 675 398 or see your GP.

SAEFVIC is a reporting service and not an emergency contact. Hours of operation are Monday – Friday, 9am – 5pm. Anyone who experiences a severe adverse event following immunisation (AEFI) should first seek medical attention from a health professional. For advice on symptoms following COVID-19 vaccines, we encourage callers to contact the Coronavirus Hotline on 1800 675 398 or see your GP.

AEFIs can be reported by the vaccine recipient, the vaccine provider or any health professional who reviews the recipient following their AEFI. For more information on reporting an AEFI, refer to SAEFVIC.

SAEFVIC COVID-19 vaccination support

Anyone who has experienced a significant adverse event following a previous dose of a COVID-19 vaccine should first have their adverse event reported to SAEFVIC. They should then be referred to VicSIS for review and management of future COVID-19 vaccination. For further information on what constitutes a significant AEFI and the referral criteria for specialist immunisation services, refer to VicSIS.

The only two absolute contraindications to vaccination are anaphylaxis to a previous dose of the same vaccine or anaphylaxis to a component of the vaccineThere are also a small group of specific medical conditions for each COVID-19 vaccine brand, precluding some individuals from receiving that brand. These individuals can still receive vaccination with alternate vaccine platforms.

A medical exemption can only be approved by authorised practitioners.  SAEFVIC, MVEC and VicSIS Central are unable to provide medical exemptions. Following a VicSIS appointment with an immunisation specialist an exemption may be provided if deemed clinically appropriate. Due to significant waiting time for VicSIS appointments, referring clinicians may need to consider providing patients with a temporary exemption where clinically indicated whilst they wait for a VicSIS appointment.  

It may be appropriate for your GP to provide short-term vaccine exemption until it is determined if it is safe to proceed to routine vaccination or if a longer temporary exemption is required. You can find more information on exemptions here.

Whilst Australia has purchased 51 million doses of the Novavax COVID-19 vaccine, due to manufacturing delays it is no longer factored into Australia’s COVID-19 vaccine rollout. When and if doses do become available Novavax COVID-19 vaccine is subject to approval for use in Australia by the TGA.

People considering vaccination against COVID-19 are recommended to discuss vaccines currently available for use in Australia with their healthcare provider.

ATAGI recommends the use of the same COVID-19 vaccine for the two doses of the primary course of vaccination unless there are specific medical contraindications or precautions.

At this time there are no recommendations for a third vaccine dose in people who have received two different COVID-19 vaccines (with an interval between the doses of at least 14 days).

For further information refer to ATAGI COVID-19 vaccination – Clinical advice on the use of a different COVID-19 vaccine as the second dose.

For further information on VicSIS referrals and appointments please refer to the VicSIS support FAQs.

SAEFVIC vaccine error support

Cold chain breaches occur when vaccines are stored outside the recommended temperature range.

Cold chain breaches affecting COVID-19 vaccines must be reported to the Commonwealth Vaccine Operations Centre (VOC) on 1800 318 208.

For information on reporting cold chain breaches affecting non COVID-19 vaccines in Victoria please see here.

If a vaccine that has been exposed to a cold chain breach is inadvertently administered to an individual, this is considered an error and must be reported to SAEFVIC (if the breach occurred in Victoria).

All vaccine errors should be reported online via SAEFVIC.

Vaxzevria is registered for use in people aged >18 years. If it has been administered to a person aged <18 years, this is constitutes a vaccine error and should be reported to SAEFVIC.

If Vaxzevria has been administered as a first dose to an individual <18 years, Comirnaty or Spikevax should be used for the second dose. A further dose (i.e. a third dose) is not required. For further information refer to the ATAGI clinical guidance on COVID-19 vaccine in Australia in 2021.

No, a second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine administered <14 days after the first dose is considered an invalid dose (and constitutes an error and should be reported to SAEFVIC). An additional COVID-19 vaccine dose should be administered as a replacement dose. The aim of this replacement dose is to attain a level of immune response that is comparable to that expected following completion of a two-dose primary course of a COVID-19 vaccine according to the recommended dosage and schedule.

SAEFVIC website support

If you have forgotten your SAEFVIC password click here to reset it. You will receive a confirmation email to reset your password.

Still need help? Submit a request here and a member of the SAEFVIC team will be in touch.