The consumer & scientific resource hub for pneumococcal disease

Who is at Risk?

Young children

Invasive Pneumococcal Disease (IPD) still causes serious illness and occasional deaths.

By 2011 this had become much less common than it was before the widespread introduction of infant pneumococcal vaccine in Australian children from 2005. However, several harmful strains of the pneumococcal germ continue to circulate and cause illness.

Routine vaccination of young children recommended.

People aged over 65 years

Pneumococcal disease is an important cause of pneumonia in adults aged 65 years or older. The elderly are especially at risk of serious illness and death from this disease. The vaccine for adults is different from the infant vaccine.

People with underlying medical risk conditions

Adults and children with the following serious medical conditions are at a greater risk of life threatening infection and hospitalisation from pneumococcal disease:

  • people with chronic illnesses such as diabetes, heart, lung or kidney disease
  • people without a spleen or whose spleen does not work properly
  • people with serious problems with their immune system.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people

All Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people over the age of 50 should get vaccinated.