According to Medicare Australia, 1 in 10 five-year olds is not fully immunised.
This is of great concern as immunisation is an effective and safe way to prevent many infections that killed a lot of children in the past. Unvaccinated children are still at risk from these very serious diseases.
The huge benefits of immunisation far outweigh the very small risks. Side-effects are usually minor, e.g. soreness at the injection site or mild fever. Serious reactions are rare.
These days, children receive more vaccines than previously but many are now combination vaccines so the child can get protected against more diseases using fewer needles.
Is your child up-to-date?
Find out by checking the National Immunisation Program Schedule below which lists the vaccines recommended and provided free for Australian children and adolescents.
If you are still unsure, speak to your GP or contact the Australian Childhood Immunisation Register which keeps a record of all vaccinations given to children under 7 years of age. You can request a free vaccination history statement for any child under 14 years of age by ringing 1800 653 809 or going to www.medicareaustralia.gov.au.
Vaccination history statements are also needed for school enrolment and to prove eligibility for Childcare Benefit and Maternity Immunisation Allowance payments.
For more information
For more about immunisation speak to your GP, visit www.immunise.health.gov.au or ring the Immunise Australia infoline on 1800 671 811. A new website www.chainofprotection.org is now online and is an authoritative and valuable reference for parents.
- Please note this information was correct at time of publication.
- For up to date information, speak to your doctor.