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Keywords:

  • Invasive pneumoccal disease;
  • vaccination;
  • social marketing;
  • rural populations

Abstract

North Coast Area Health Service (NCAHS) conducted a seven week television advertising campaign to raise community awareness of the availability of free adult pneumococcal vaccination and to increase coverage among North Coast residents in high risk groups. Effectiveness of the campaign was evaluated by examining vaccine ordering patterns of North Coast vaccination providers from 2005/2006 as a proxy for vaccination coverage. In the months during and immediately following (June-September 2006) the advertising campaign, a significantly higher proportion of vaccines were despatched to North Coast immunisation service providers. The advertising campaign was an effective strategy to promote vaccination among NCAHS residents not immunised in the first year of the National Pneumococcal Program for Older Australians. This higher immunisation coverage is expected to contribute to the statewide trend of significant reductions in invasive pneumococcal disease (IPD) notifications.