PAEDS is a network of clinicians and public health researchers in five Australian tertiary paediatric hospitals which also works with several associate investigators, collaborators and contributors. PAEDS is funded by the Australian Government Department of Health with contributions from the state health departments of New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia, Western Australia and Queensland. Funding from NHMRC grants also supplements certain surveillance activities. PAEDS is also under the oversight of the PAEDS Reference Group, composed of representatives from all participating Departments of Health and independent expert groups.
The conditions included in PAEDS are acute flaccid paralysis, intussusception, varicella and herpes zoster, pertussis, febrile seizures and acute childhood encephalitis.
Our extensive national partnership of researchers and State, Territory and Australian Government Departments of Health are pleased to announce the launch of a newly funded research initiative.
This initiative aims to improve the prevention of influenza and pertussis in children in Australia. As a result of immunisation, most vaccine preventable diseases in children are now very rarely seen. However, two conditions – influenza or ‘the flu’ and pertussis or ‘whooping cough’ cause almost 3000 children to be hospitalised in Australia each year and deaths from both illnesses, including in healthy babies and children, continue to occur.
We will conduct research across six sites in different regions of Australia to identify why these diseases remain prevalent, and understand what reasons (such as lack of vaccination or low vaccine effectiveness) contribute most to disease occurring. We will then look at factors at the individual, community, system and policy levels that can be addressed to help improve the prevention of both conditions.