Immunisation is one of the best ways you can protect yourself and others from infectious diseases in our community.
In partnership with the Victorian AIDS Council, the Victorian government has launched an immunisation campaign. It's a campaign to encourage gay, bisexual men, and men who have sex with men to take up of the offer of four free vaccinations (some are available for a limited time). A Hepatitis B vaccination is also available for people who live with HIV.
You must live in Victoria to be eligible for these free vaccines.
What free vaccines are available?
Meningococcal ACWY vaccination
To combat a recent rise in cases of meningococcal C disease, the Victorian Government has introduced a free vaccine program for Victorian men who have sex with men. The free vaccine program is available until 31 December 2018.
Although uncommon, meningococcal disease can become life-threatening very quickly. In fatal cases of meningococcal disease, the average time from the first symptom until death is 24 to 48 hours. Read more about the free meningococcal ACWY vaccine for men who have sex with men.
Hepatitis A vaccination
Since March 2017, there has been an increasing number of confirmed cases of hepatitis A across Victoria. Hepatitis A is a viral infection of the liver.
To stop the spread of this disease, the Victorian government has introduced a free, two dose hepatitis A vaccination program for those at risk.
Until 31 December 2018, Victorian men who have sex with men can access a free hepatitis A vaccine. These are available from GPs and all other immunisation providers across Victoria (including sexual health clinics).
Read more about hepatitis A.
Hepatitis B vaccination
Immunisation is your best protection against hepatitis B. Hepatitis B (also known as Hep B) is a viral infection that causes liver inflammation and can lead to serious illness or death. In Victoria, a free hepatitis B vaccine is provided for men who have sex with men and people living with HIV.
Read more about hepatitis B - immunisation.
Human papillomavirus (HPV) – immunisation
Protect yourself into the future and get the Human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine. HPV infections are common, highly contagious and usually have no symptoms. Some types of HPV can cause genital warts while others can cause some cancers. The HPV vaccine helps prevent the types of HPV that cause most HPV-related cancers in men.
The HPV vaccine is very safe and effective and can protect against 90 per cent of HPV-related cancers in men, and 90 per cent of genital warts. Immunisation against HPV involves a course of three injections over a six-month period. It is available free of charge for Victorian men (aged up to 26 years old) who have sex with men until 31 December 2018.
Read more about Human papillomavirus (HPV) – immunisation.
Links and where to get help.
- Your GP
- Your local government immunisation service
- NURSE-ON-CALL. Tel. 1300 60 60 24 – for expert health information and advice (24 hours, 7 days)
- Immunisation Program, Department of Health & Human Services, Victorian Government Tel. 1300 882 008
- National Immunisation Information Line Tel. 1800 671 811
- SAEFVIC, the Victorian vaccine safety service Tel. 1300 882 924 #1