Some Government benefits are available to the parents of children who are up to date with their immunisation or have an exemption on medical grounds. These benefits include; the Family Tax Benefit part A Supplement, Child Care Rebate and Child Care Benefit.
Centrelink will provide notices to families from 1 January 2016 which they can take to their general practitioner or vaccination provider so they can access free vaccinations.
The list of current early childhood vaccines required for Family Tax Benefit part A Supplement (FTB Part A supplement), Child Care Rebate (CCR) and Child Care Benefit (CCB) is available from the Department of Social Services website.
Vaccines which are not required to receive family assistance payments are still recommended for some age groups. For example, meningococcal C and varicella are clinically recommended and funded by the Government for young individuals between the ages of 10-19 years of age. These vaccines are not linked to family assistance payments.
Immunisation requirements vary depending on the age and the vaccination history of the child and catch up schedules are tailored to the individual needs of children. Vaccination providers are best placed to discuss individual circumstances and provide advice on the best available evidence.
If your child is not up to date with their vaccinations speak with your general practitioner or vaccination provider about free catch-up vaccinations. In the meantime, the Department of Health is providing information to vaccination providers on the catch-up arrangements. You may also find the following resources helpful when considering catch-up vaccinations:
- Australian Immunisation Handbook 10th edition, provides information on immunisation practice, new vaccines and vaccine preventable diseases in Australia.
- Myths and Realities- responding to arguments against vaccination, examines some of the common arguments against immunisation to assist practitioners and parents make formed decision about the benefits and risks of vaccination.
- The Science of Immunisation: Question and Answers, produced by the Australian Academy of Science, an independent scientific body, aims to summarise and clarify understanding of the science of immunisation for non-specialist readers.
To check your child’s immunisation status, please contact the Australian Immunisation Register (AIR).
- Department of Human Services website
- Department of Social Services website
- Understanding Childhood Immunisation booklet, which is an easy to use guide for parents on childhood immunisation in Australia.
- Frequently Asked Questions about Immunisation
- Immunise Australia Health Professionals page