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Advertising flu shots

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The TGA does not regulate the advertising of health services unless an advertisement for a vaccination service also promotes the use of a specific therapeutic good. If it does, then the advertisement must comply with the Therapeutic Goods Advertising Code.

What to avoid when advertising vaccination services

When advertising vaccination services, avoid using:

  • information that might enable consumers to identify the vaccine or the manufacturer of the vaccine
  • statements or representations that harmful effects will occur from not receiving the vaccine
  • references to any misleading therapeutic benefit of a vaccine (for example, a use that is not a TGA-approved indication for the vaccine)
  • an indication that the vaccine administered as part of the service is superior to other vaccines
  • portrayals of the vaccine or service in a way that trivialises or conflicts with public health policies, or misleads consumers in any other way
  • price comparisons
  • incentives to encourage the consumer to obtain the service or vaccine, or
  • any other claim that promotes the use or supply of the vaccine.

Use of any of the above makes advertising of your service to be more likely considered advertising of the vaccine itself and subject to therapeutic goods legislation.

What to include when advertising vaccination services

It is recommended that advertisements for seasonal influenza vaccination services should include:

  • the vaccine type, for example, trivalent or quadrivalent
  • that influenza vaccines are free to people from high risk groups identified in the National Immunisation Program Schedule
  • that people from high risk groups should seek advice from their medical practitioner.

High risk groups eligible for free influenza vaccines

High risk groups that are eligible for free influenza vaccines include:

  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 0 to 5 years
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who are aged 10 years and over
  • pregnant women
  • people aged six months and over with medical conditions such as severe asthma, lung or heart disease, low immunity or diabetes that can lead to complications from influenza
  • people aged 65 years and over.
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