Presenting critical immunisation information – COVID-19 and beyond

Australian Government Department of Health

Information on the safest and most effective use of vaccines is critical for both health professionals and the general public. This has never been more apparent than during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Building on our extensive experience in public health and immunisation content, Biotext worked with the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI) and the COVID-19 Vaccine Taskforce throughout 2021 to help transform technical advice about vaccination into plain-language web pages and resources for various audiences. Our work included clinical guidance for health professionals, resources for consumers, and a graphical representation of data on the risks and benefits of vaccination.

Biotext also provides a range of communication services to support ATAGI’s work. As well as attending ATAGI meetings and writing the minutes, we help health professionals and consumers understand immunisation issues through products such as the ATAGI annual statement on immunisation and annual influenza statements.

Immunisation providers rely on the Australian immunisation handbook for the latest clinical advice. To give health professionals in Australia better access to this essential clinical resource, the Biotext team helped to adapt the guide for a digital platform. We rewrote the content in plainer language to make it quicker and easier to read and understand. We continue to work with the department to keep the website up to date and accurate, with recent updates to chapters including herpes zoster, rabies and tuberculosis.

In 2021, for the 4th year in a row, Biotext worked with the Department of Health and the National Centre for Immunisation Research and Surveillance to produce the annual AusVaxSafety summary report, which gives a plain language summary of the data generated by the AusVaxSafety system.

Our role:

Content analysis building on our scientific expertise, we developed a deep understanding of the content and how health practitioners used the guide

Information architecture – we worked with UX experts to develop and refine the online structure and navigation; this included ensuring that updates to guidelines were prominent on each page of content so practitioners could quickly access the latest information

Writing and editing – we transformed the content from dense academic-style text to a plain-language format that meets best practice for web writing

Accessibility we also ensured that the content met accessibility and other requirements under Australian Government digital standards

Infographics – we developed a series of infographics to give health professionals a quick visual guide to complex topics