Jab policy boosts coverage
The ‘no jab, no pay’ threat has prompted an extra 174,000 children to be vaccinated over the last year.
The new rules imposed last financial year mean the families of about 350,000 children risk losing payments, worth up to $29 a fortnight for each child, if their vaccinations are not up to date.
Official stats show the policy has resulted in an increase of 174,000 children being immunised.
Social Services Minister Anne Ruston said the increase in vaccinations is good to see, but there is more to be done.
“We've got to encourage those people that are actually actively choosing not to vaccinate their kids,” Senator Ruston told Sky News.
“The risks that are associated with not vaccinating, and the impact of the conditions or the diseases we're vaccinating against, is a far more serious risk to their children than the concerns and the fears that they have about vaccination.
“We'll continue working to make sure that we provide the proper information to these people, and hopefully we'll see more and more of them understanding the value of vaccinating and immunising their children.”
Senator Ruston said that not all of the families were objectors to vaccination.
“People, sometimes, in the trauma or the tough times that they have when they've got lots of young children, that sometimes they've been overlooking these vaccinations,” she said.
“Once they get to school age or childcare age, that's when the realisation occurs, that obviously we were expecting their children to be vaccinated.
“Vaccinate your children by the due date, because that provides your child with the maximum amount of protection.”