Immunisation Related Payments for Parents
Information about Government benefits available to parents of children who meet immunisation requirements.
Some Government benefits (see below) are available to parents of children who meet certain immunisation requirements, that is, they are up to date with immunisation or have an appropriate exemption (benefits can be received without a child being fully immunised).
To check your child’s immunisation status, please contact the Australian Childhood Immunisation Register (ACIR). Contact details for the ACIR can be found on the Useful links page.
To receive benefits without your child being fully immunised your healthcare provider needs to certify that:
- your child has a medical reason not to have a particular vaccination; or
- your child has had a disease and has a natural immunity; or
- a particular vaccine is unavailable.
If so, you will need to complete the Immunisation exemption: Medical contraindication form available on the Medicare Australia website with the assistance of your healthcare provider. This information will then be recorded with the ACIR.
You can refuse to be vaccinated on non-medical grounds if you have a personal, philosophical, religious or medical belief that your child should not be immunised. You will need to complete the Immunisation exemption: Conscientious objection form available on the Medicare Australia website with the assistance of your healthcare provider. This information will then be recorded with the ACIR.
Maternity Immunisation Allowance (MIA)The purpose of this measure has been to increase the proportion of four year old children in Australia who are fully immunised. For more information, see Maternity Immunisation Allowance (MIA) on the Centrelink website.
The MIA was previously paid for immunised children (or those for whom an approved exemption has been obtained) when a child is aged between 18 months and 24 months. This initiative was designed to act as a strong incentive and reminder to parents to immunise their children on time.
From 1 January 2009 the existing payment was split equally in half and made in two payments for children who have received the immunisations required for an 18 month old and for a four year old. Parents and carers with children who met the immunisation requirements for an 18 month old would be paid the first MIA payment ($129) when the child is aged between 18 months and 24 months. The second MIA payment ($129) would be made available when children have received their four year old vaccinations (or have an approved exemption) and had to be claimed on or before the child's fifth birthday. The payments were indexed twice a year, and in practice the second instalment payment would be higher than the first due to subsequent indexation.
As of 1 July 2012, the MIA will cease and be replaced by new government reforms that aim to further improve immunisation rates over time by linking immunisation to the Family Tax Benefit Part A supplement. For further details about the new reforms see “Changes to National Immunisation Schedule” on the Immunise Australia website.
Page last modified: 25 November, 2011