No Jab No Pay: Parents warned to check children’s immunisation

Xavier (6) and Indiana (4) Morrissey with their immunisation passports. Picture: Martin Kennealey         d448962
Xavier (6) and Indiana (4) Morrissey with their immunisation passports. Picture: Martin Kennealey         d448962

THE Health Department is encouraging parents to check their children’s immunisations are up-to-date before the school year starts next week.

WA Health’s communicable disease control directorate medical coordinator Paul Effler said immunisation was the best way to protect children against serious infections.

“While parents are busy ticking off their back-to-school check list, it is timely to remind them to ensure their children are protected from 16 vaccine preventable diseases,” he said.

“Ensuring your child’s immunisations are up-to-date will keep them protected and help stop the spread of these diseases in the community.”

Ballajura resident Annette Morrisey, who also works for the Health Department, said she immunised her children Xavier (6) and Indianna (4) to protect them from disease.

“Ensuring their immunisations are up to date is easy and keeps them, the community and their school friends safe from preventable diseases like measles,” she said.

The childhood immunisation program is free through the National Immunisation Program, but parents should check with their health provider whether a consultation fee is applied or if it will bulk bill.

The Australian Government’s ‘No Jab No Pay’ policy started on January 1 and affects parents who receive family assistance payments.

Under the policy, children must be fully vaccinated for parents to be eligible to receive payments.

“In WA 92 per cent of children aged four and over are fully immunised,” Prof Effler said.

“However at least 95 per cent of children must be fully immunised to effectively prevent outbreaks of highly infectious diseases like measles.

“Parents who are unsure about their child’s immunisation history can visit the Medicare Australia website to get a record of past immunisations.”

For more information, visit healthywa.wa.gov.au/immunisation.