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Immunisation

Immunisation protects you and your children against harmful infections before you come into contact with them in the community – which is why our Maternal and Child Health Service provides immunisation and professional advice to you and your children, free of charge.

How does immunisation work?

Immunisation uses your body’s natural defence mechanism – the immune response – to build resistance to specific infections. This helps you and your children stay healthy against serious diseases.

Immunisations are given to you by our nurses, who are approved accredited immunisers in accordance with the Drugs, Poisons and Controlled Substances Regulations 1995.

No Jab No Pay | Victorian Government Legislation from 1 January 2016

In an effort to improve childhood immunisation rates, the Victorian Government has modified the Public Health and Wellbeing Act 2008.

What this means for your family: Early childhood education and care services cannot confirm enrolment of your child unless the parent or carer provides documentation showing that the child:

  • is fully vaccinated for their age
  • is on a recognised catch-up schedule if he or she has fallen behind with vaccinations
  • is on a recognised catch-up schedule if he or she has come from overseas and has not fully met the National Immunisation Program requirements
  • has a medical reason not to be vaccinated

Please note that conscientious objection to vaccination is not an exemption.

From 1 January 2016

  • Only parents of children (less than 20 years of age) who are fully immunised or are on a recognised catch-up schedule can receive the Child Care Benefit, the Child Care Rebate and the Family Tax Benefit Part A end of year supplement. The relevant vaccinations are those under the National Immunisation Program (NIP) which covers the vaccines usually administered before age five. These vaccinations must be recorded on the Australian Childhood Immunisation Register (ACIR)
  • Children with medical contraindications or natural immunity for certain diseases will continue to be exempt from the requirements
  • Conscientious objection and vaccination objection on non-medical grounds will no longer be a valid exemption from immunisation requirements
  • Families eligible to receive family assistance payments and have children less than 20 years of age, who may not meet the new immunisation requirements, will be notified by Centrelink

Free Catch-Up for Children Under Six Years of Age

From 1 January 2016, parents who wish to immunise their children in order to continue to receive family assistance payments will have access to free catch-up vaccines for a time-limited period (1 January 2016 to 31 December 2017).

For further information, please visit Update No Jab No Pay - Immunisation Catch-up Arrangements.

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