NSW Health is aware of an ongoing shortage of hepatitis B vaccine in the private market. Please refer to the Therapeutic Goods Administration Medicines Shortage Information page for up to date information.
Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI) has developed clinical advice for vaccination providers on the use of hepatitis B vaccines during supply shortages.
There are no shortages of hepatitis B vaccine in the government programs (for eligibility, please see Additional Commonwealth and NSW-funded free vaccines).
Immunisation providers in NSW might receive queries regarding health care students who are trying to access the vaccine in advance of their clinical placements. Please note that individuals <20 years of age are eligible for free hepatitis B vaccine under the National Immunisation Program ongoing catch up arrangements.
Vaccination options include:
- those <20 years of age can receive 3 doses of paediatric hepatitis B vaccine, or
- those ≥20 years of age can receive Twinrix vaccine (combined hepatitis A and B vaccine), or
- a double dose of H-B-VAX II (paediatric), Engerix (paediatric) or Twinrix Junior is also considered a valid adult dose, or
- complete the vaccine course with the same vaccine brand if available or use the alternative brand (H-B-VAX II or Engerix, whichever is available) to complete the course.
Schedules should be administered as per the Table 4.5.1: Recommended schedules for use of monovalent hepatitis B and hepatitis B combination vaccines in the Hepatitis B chapter in The Australian Immunisation Handbook (10th edition).