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Immunisation for Health Practitioners
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UPDATE: From April 2020, further changes have been made to the Immunisation for Health Practitioners course to be more flexible with student requirements. Students can complete this course in as little as 3 weeks if studied full time at 40 hours per week. The course length has been extended from 10 weeks to being self-paced, over a maximum of 120 days. Certificates will be issued as soon as all course requirements have been met (after a minimum of 3 weeks).

The Australian College of Nursing (ACN) is authorised to deliver the Immunisation for Health Practitioners course under the National Immunisation Education Framework for Health Professionals (2017). The Immunisation for Health Practitioners course is based on the National Framework, which replaced the National Guidelines for Immunisation Education for Registered Nurses and Midwives (2001).

We have taken on board student and industry feedback and made some quality improvements to our Immunisation for Health Practitioners course beginning August 2019. We have streamlined assessments and made the course more relevant for practice — enabling our students to be better equipped to take their skills to the workplace. ACN’s intent is to continually offer courses that are contemporary and relevant to meet the needs of our students and industry which includes an interactive and engaging learning delivery system with opportunities to interact with other students.

Intakes

Start within 3 working days!

Duration

Flexible, self-paced
(minimum 21 days)

Study mode

Online
Equivalent to 120 hours CPD

Why study this course

Health care providers are at the forefront in protecting the community’s health and well-being. Immunisation as a national public health strategy continues to be a cost-effective means in reducing the mortality and morbidity rates related to vaccine-preventable diseases in Australia. In line with the emphasis of National Immunisation Strategy 2019 – 2024, it is also recognised that having appropriately trained health professionals is crucial in ensuring successful delivery of immunisation services to improve immunisation coverage rates nationally.

The design of the Immunisation for Health Practitioners course hinges on the national educational requirements as determined by the National Framework (2017). This course aims to equip health practitioners with the essential attributes to be an immunisation advocate and promote immunisation uptake nationally. Health practitioners who have successfully passed this course should refer to the Department of Health in the jurisdiction they practice in, or wish to practice in, for information and conditions leading to authorisation to immunise independent of a medical officer.

Registered Nurses and Midwives who have previously completed the Immunisation for Registered Nurses course at ACN under the former National Guidelines for Immunisation Education for Registered Nurses and Midwives (2001) should refer to the jurisdictions they are working in for the conditions to continue to maintain their authority to immunise independent of medical officers.

Course overview

Learning outcomes

Using the National Immunisation Education Framework for Health Professionals (2017) and the current best practice standards and recommendations in the current version of The Australian Immunisation Handbook, it is anticipated that on successful completion of this course, participants will be able to:

  • define goals and importance of immunisation programs in the global and Australian context
  • apply knowledge of the immune response to vaccines and the diseases they prevent
  • apply knowledge of legal and ethical issues related to immunisation practice
  • analyse the principles of immunisation evidence based practice to achieve optimal safe outcomes.

Admission

All applicants are required to hold a:

  • qualification leading to registration recognised by the relevant National Board
  • general registration as a nurse, midwife, paramedic, pharmacist or Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Healthcare practitioner with the relevant National Board.

NOTE: All health professionals applying to enrol in the course must confirm their eligibility to immunise independent of medical officers by checking Department of Health policy in their relevant state or territory.

As this is a theoretical course, students can study with ACN to increase their knowledge but not their scope of practice you have to comply with relevant state and territory regulations.

Award

Students who have successfully passed this course will be awarded an electronic certificate of completion when all course requirements have been met, and 120 hours CPD. Certificates will not be awarded for part completion of the course.

Resources

The following are some of the resources used which you can access online prior to course commencement:

It is a requirement of this course that you have access to a computer or laptop and internet access using either Google Chrome or Firefox. Any costs in relation to this requirement are additional and not part of the course fees.

How to apply

We strongly encourage applications from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Healthcare professionals to study this course. If you are an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander we encourage you to let us know in your application. If you require assistance with your making your application or support during the course please don’t hesitate to let us know.

Application form will open in a new window. Your privacy is very important to us. To better serve you, the form information you enter is recorded in real time.

Due to increased demand, please note that acknowledgement of your application and enrolment into the course may take up to 3 working days from the date of application.

Before applying – Please note that completing the Immunisation for Health Practitioners course does not automatically change your scope of practice or allow you to immunise without a medical officer. Direct entry midwives or dual registration nurse/midwives who do not have current RN registration, enrolled nurses, registered nurses in the ACT and other healthcare professionals are responsible for checking your standards of practice as designated by the NMBA or other applicable registering authority. State and Territory jurisdiction and guidelines must be followed by all healthcare professionals and you are advised to check with your practising authority to consider if this course is appropriate for you to use in your desired clinical setting. For more information please refer to our FAQ ‘Can enrolled nurses, midwives and pharmacists study this course?‘.

Scholarship – The Eric Murray Achievement Award is a scholarship that can be applied for by current immunisation students. More information can be found here: acnfoundation.org.au/grants-awards

2020 ACN member price*: 
2020 Non-member price*:2021 Member price*:2021 Non-member price*:
$873.00$970.00$895.50$995.00

Refunds and deferrals are not applicable for this course unless there are extenuating circumstances and the students has not yet logged in to the course, in which case the admin fee will not be refunded. Refer to the Frequently Asked Questions for further information.

*Fees are subject to change without notice.

Frequently asked questions

Can enrolled nurses, midwives and pharmacists study this course?
Yes they can.

The Immunisation for Health Practitioners course is suitable for registered and enrolled nurses, midwives, pharmacists and other allied health workers. Evidence of registration with a relevant professional board is required on application. All health professionals applying to enrol in the course must confirm eligibility to immunise independent of medical officers after completing this course by checking health policy in their relevant state or territory.

Please refer to the jurisdictional conditions in the State / Territory you practice in for further information regarding authorisation as immunisers.

State / Territory Information Weblinks
Australian Capital Territory Current legislation does not cover an authority for nurses to immunise without the direction of a medical officer, see ACT Medicines, Poisons and Therapeutic Goods Act 2008
The Pharmacy Guild of Australia – Vaccination services https://www.guild.org.au/programs/vaccination-services
New South Wales Authority for registered nurses and midwives https://www.health.nsw.gov.au/immunisation/Documents/Authority-for-RNs-and-Midwives-Jan-2014.pdf
Pharmacist initiation and administration of vaccines https://www.health.nsw.gov.au/pharmaceutical/pharmacists/Pages/default.aspx
Expansion of NSW pharmacist vaccination program from 1 January 2019 https://www.health.nsw.gov.au/immunisation/Pages/pharmacist-vaccination-expansion.aspx
The Pharmacy Guild of Australia – Vaccination services https://www.guild.org.au/programs/vaccination-services
Northern Territory Immunisation: health professionals https://health.nt.gov.au/professionals/centre-for-disease-control/immunisation-health-professionals
The Pharmacy Guild of Australia – Vaccination services https://www.guild.org.au/programs/vaccination-services
Queensland Registration and qualifications https://www.health.qld.gov.au/clinical-practice/guidelines-procedures/diseases-infection/immunisation/registration-qualifications

https://www.health.qld.gov.au/ocnmo/resources

https://www.legislation.qld.gov.au/view/pdf/2017-10-01/sl-1996-0414

https://www.health.qld.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0028/443287/dtp-immunisation.pdf

The Pharmacy Guild of Australia – Vaccination services https://www.guild.org.au/programs/vaccination-services

https://www.guild.org.au/guild-branches/qld/training

https://www.health.qld.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0016/444130/standard-pharmacy-vaccination.pdf

Direct entry Midwives https://www.health.qld.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0027/443097/dtp-midwives.pdf
South Australia Vaccine administration code https://www.sahealth.sa.gov.au/wps/wcm/connect/public+content/sa+health+internet/about+us/legislation/controlled+substances+legislation/vaccine+administration+code
The Pharmacy Guild of Australia – Vaccination services https://www.guild.org.au/programs/vaccination-services
Tasmania Authorised immunisers in Tasmania https://www.dhhs.tas.gov.au/publichealth/communicable_diseases_prevention_unit/immunisation/nurse_immuniser
Information for Immunisation providers https://www.dhhs.tas.gov.au/publichealth/communicable_diseases_prevention_unit/immunisation/information_for_immunisation_providers
The Pharmacy Guild of Australia – Vaccination services https://www.guild.org.au/programs/vaccination-services
Victoria Immunisers in Victoria https://www2.health.vic.gov.au/public-health/immunisation/immunisers-in-victoria/nurse-immunisers/nurse-immunisers-requirements-responsibilities

https://www2.health.vic.gov.au/public-health/immunisation/immunisers-in-victoria/nurse-immunisers

The Pharmacy Guild of Australia – Vaccination services https://www.guild.org.au/programs/vaccination-services

https://www2.health.vic.gov.au/public-health/immunisation/immunisers-in-victoria/pharmacist-immunisers

Western Australia Immunisation education https://ww2.health.wa.gov.au/Articles/F_I/Immunisation-education
The Pharmacy Guild of Australia – Vaccination services https://www.guild.org.au/programs/vaccination-services

What intakes are available or when can I start?
This course is self-paced and flexible meaning that you can start whenever you apply. It will take up to 3 working days for your application to be processed and your enrolment details to be sent out as your application and registration needs to be checked.

How will this course benefit my practice?
Immunisation remains a simple, safe and effective means of protecting one from illness, disability and death caused by vaccine-preventable diseases (WHO, 2016).
The ‘No jab, no pay’ immunisation requirements introduced in 2016 by the Australian government means that there are greater career opportunities for authorised immunisers to be involved in leading and delivering immunisation services Australia-wide.

The Immunisation for Health Practitioners course will benefit your practice by helping you to develop a better understanding of the knowledge, skills and attitudes needed to competently deliver a professional immunisation service to the communities in Australia.

Please refer to the Department of Health of your state or territory for specific restrictions, requirements and scope of practice as an authorised immuniser.

What are the prospects of completing the immunisation course?
Completing this course will help to enhance your employability and widen your career options. Being equipped with the knowledge and skills in immunisation may just help you clinch your next ideal job. You could be combining work and travel to the beautiful exotic locations that Australia has to offer.

Please refer to the Department of Health of your state or territory for specific restrictions and scope of practice as an authorised immuniser.

Will I have support?
Yes! As a student, you will be supported by:

  • a tutor who is experienced in the field of immunisation. Your tutor will help and guide you through the course and clarify any queries you may have
  • a nurse educator / course coordinator who can provide additional support
  • IT support for troubleshooting access issues

How is the course structured and what content do you cover?
The course covers all the theoretical components of immunisation education. Students will be guided by the recommended study and assessment timetable for this self-paced course. The contents meet the National Immunisation Education Framework for Health Professionals (2017) requirements:
Theme 1: The Global and Australian Context for Immunisation (24 hours)
Theme 2: The Law, Ethics and Immunisation (24 hours)
Theme 3: The Immune System and Immunisation (24 hours)
Theme 4: Immunisation Practice (48 hours)

This course is 100% completed online where you will have the opportunity to interact with other students in a focussed learning environment.

Is there any clinical placement? Do I have to complete a clinical component to get the certificate?
There is no clinical component or face-to face classes.

ACN will not be organising any clinical placement for the course and is not a requirement to complete the course. A certificate of completion will be sent after the completion of all online assessments as required.

What are the course assessment items?
There are 5 assessment tasks that are completed online*. Each theme is assessed using a multiple-choice quiz*. The last assessment is a catch-up table based on scenarios*.

All assessment tasks must be passed to pass the course which includes being completed on time.

There will be a recommended study and assessment timetable to help you plan and manage the workload in this course.

*QLD health currently requires different assessments (academic essays with referencing) to be completed than all other states to be valid for practice. If you are working in or intend to work in QLD and need this course to be valid in QLD (as well as Nationally) you will need to complete these different assessments.

Is there recognition of prior learning (RPL) for this course?
If you have previously completed a non- ACN course that meets the requirements as stipulated in The National Immunisation Education Framework for Health Professionals (2017), you may be able to apply for recognition of prior learning (RPL). RPL is assessed on a case-by-case basis. Please email immunisationadmin@acn.edu.au to receive an information package for RPL.

I have completed the Immunisation for Registered Nurses course with ACN. Do I need to do this course again?
If you have previously completed the Immunisation for Registered Nurses course with ACN, and have maintained the education updates as stipulated by the jurisdiction you are practicing in, you may not be required to complete this course again.

Face-to-face immunisation updates sessions as continuing professional development (CPD) are offered by ACN and are available around Australia.

I am a new graduate nurse looking for work. Can I still do the course?
Yes. You need not be currently employed to enrol in the course.

How do I enrol?
To enrol, you will need to complete the Immunisation Enrolment Form, and submit it online.

You must include a copy of your registration certificate from the relevant National Board when you enrol.

Can I get a refund, deferral or withdraw from the course after I have already applied?
Refunds and deferrals are not applicable for this course as you commence the course within 3 days of submitting your enrolment application.
If you have extenuating circumstances and you have never logged onto the online learning system to commence the course, you can apply for a refund or deferral by emailing immunisationadmin@acn.edu.au with evidence as appropriate. Please note that refunds are subject to a non-refundable administration fee. Refunds will be processed within fourteen (14) days after receipt of a validated request.

Withdrawals can be made at any time by sending in an email to immunisation@acn.edu.au, no refund will be given in this instance.

The course cannot be transferred to another person or redeemed as credit. For further information contact the Customer Services team on 1800 265 534.

Can I pay for this course in instalments?
Full fees will need to be paid at the time of application for enrolment.

My employer wants to sponsor me to do the course. How can they do it?
Please email immunisationadmin@acn.edu.au with a purchase order so that an invoice can be created.

Group purchases can also be coordinated by emailing the admin team as above.

Can I claim this course as a tax deductible expense?
It is best to speak to your accountant or contact the Australian Taxation Office https://www.ato.gov.au.

Student testimonials

Hear straight from our students about their experiences with ACN’s Immunisation for Health Practitioners course.

Contact us

Need more information? You can contact our dedicated administrative team to help you with all of your general enquiries or to send purchase orders through for employer paid applications. If you need more assistance with deciding if this course is right for you please email the course coordinator.

For general enquiries:
Customer Services
t: 02 9745 7500 or 1800 265 534 (charges may apply)
e: immunisationadmin@acn.edu.au

For specific course assistance:
Rachel McCullough – Nurse Educator, Higher Education
e: immunisation@acn.edu.au