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Abstract

Objectives: To investigate if Aboriginal people are equally included in new forms of vaccine safety post-marketing surveillance that support safety signal detection and confidence in the vaccine program by comparing the use of Vaxtracker active adverse events following immunisation (AEFI) surveillance between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal parents of vaccinated children.

Methods: In 2016, automated AEFI surveillance was conducted to monitor seasonal influenza vaccine in children aged 18 months to less than 5 years and for DTPa vaccine after the inclusion of a new dose at 18 months of age. To explore reasons for non-response, Aboriginal Immunisation Officers contacted the parents/carers of 24 (48.0%) Aboriginal children and 31 (26.7%) non-Aboriginal children who did not respond to the online survey.

Results: There were differential response rates for both vaccines between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal enrolees; 56.4% vs 76.8% (p=0.005) and 55.1% vs 78.2% (p

Conclusion: New systems of vaccine safety surveillance may not adequately include Aboriginal people.

Implications: Vaccine safety surveillance systems need to be designed to ensure high levels of participation and response from Aboriginal people.

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