Published on 15 Sep 2023
Authored by Pfizer Medical Team
Vaccines were developed by scientists over 200 years ago. Since the first one back in 1796, vaccines have been protecting us from diseases like smallpox, polio, flu and pneumococcal disease. In fact, an estimated 2-3 million lives are saved by vaccines every year.1
People had questions about vaccines then and they still do today. Asking questions is a good thing and it’s best to get answers from trustworthy sources. It’s important to understand what vaccines are, how they work, the potential risks and how they can help protect you and your loved ones.
Here are 3 simple steps you can take to get started:
1) Talk to your doctor about vaccinations
It’s great to do some research on your own and write down questions for your doctor
Health professionals such as your doctor, pharmacist, or nurse can answer questions about vaccinations, so make an appointment as soon as you can
The National Centre for Immunisation Research and Surveillance (NCIRS) has a resource called Sharing Knowledge About Immunisation (SKAI) which provides further evidence-based information, tools and answers to commonly asked questions. Click here to learn more.
1) Find out what vaccines you need
Vaccines are recommended across all stages of life, and what vaccines you need depends on factors like your overall health, age, lifestyle (eg travel) and occupation2
The best way to protect your health, or the health of a loved one, is to find out which vaccines are recommended, why they’re recommended, and when they are recommended.
3) Make a plan to include vaccinations into your wellness routine
Vaccination recommendations change as your health status, lifestyle (eg travel) or age changes, you may need additional/different protection3
Keep track of your vaccination history and note which vaccines you’re missing. You can find more information on how to find your vaccination records here4
Include vaccinations and keeping keeping up-to-date with your vaccination schedule a part of your healthy lifestyle
Vaccines: a scientific wonder.
Your immune system is your body’s central defence against infections caused by viruses, bacteria and other bugs. But even a strong, healthy immune system may not be able to stand up against every threat. That’s where vaccines come in. Each vaccine is designed to train the immune system so it can better protect you against a specific threat.3
Even if you are vaccinated against a specific bug, for example, you can still get infected. But vaccines can help prevent a potentially serious illness from becoming more severe.
Maintaining a healthy lifestyle can have a big effect on your long-term health and of your loved ones. A proper health plan is more than good diet and exercise. It’s also necessary to see your doctor for regular check-ups and keep up-to-date with vaccinations.
Getting vaccinated is not just something to do throughout your childhood. As an adult, medical risk factors and even your age may put you at risk of known vaccine-preventable diseases as well as new ones that emerge. Pregnancy is also a time when vaccination may be important to help protect both mum and bub.6 Vaccines help our bodies stay healthy and fight off preventable illnesses that could harm you.3
Incorporating vaccination into your overall wellness routine is a simple step towards better health. To stay on track, it’s important to set regular reminders and have your necessary information easily accessible.
It’s time to take action. Learn more about vaccine-preventable diseases here.
Find out where to get vaccinations
Visit the Australian Immunisation Handbook and talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist for more information.
The information provided in this site is intended only for residents of Australia.
The health information in this site is provided for educational purposes only and is not intended to replace discussions with a healthcare professional.
Vaccines and immunization: Vaccine safety. World Health Organization. https://www.who.int/news-room/questions-and-answers/item/vaccines-and-immunization-vaccine-safety. Accessed 14 September 2023.
When to get vaccinated. Australian Government Department of Health and Aged Care. https://www.health.gov.au/topics/immunisation/when-to-get-vaccinated Accessed 14 September 2023.
Vaccines. Better Health Channel. https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/healthyliving/vaccines. Accessed 14 September 2023.
How to find your vaccination records. Better Health Channel. https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/healthyliving/How-to-find-your-vaccination-records#vaccination-records-not-on-the-air. Accessed 14 September 2023.
Phases of clinical trials. National Centre for Immunisation Research and Surveillance Australia. https://www.ncirs.org.au/phases-clinical-trials. Accessed 14 September 2023.
Sharing Knowledge About Immunisation, National Centre for Immunisation Research and Surveillance. https://www.ncirs.org.au/our-work/sharing-knowledge-about-immunisation. Accessed 14 September 2023.
Australian Immunisation Handbook: https://immunisationhandbook.health.gov.au/contents
Vaccine-preventable diseases: https://immunisationhandbook.health.gov.au/contents/vaccine-preventable-diseases
Better Health Channel (How to find your vaccination records): https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/healthyliving/How-to-find-your-vaccination-records#vaccination-records-not-on-the-air
National Centre for Immunisation Research and Surveillance: https://ncirs.org.au/
Sharing Knowledge About Immunisation: https://skai.org.au/