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Good News From The 2015 Budget – The Adult Immunisation Register

This May, the Government announced it will provide more than $26 million over four years to fund a range of initiatives that will boost immunisation coverage across Australia 1.

One of these activities will be the implementation of national digital recording system for school-based vaccinations, as well as an Adult Immunisation Register from September 2016.2

Currently only children under the age of seven have their immunisation history recorded in Australia.3 The Childhood Immunisation Register was only established in 1996, which means adults aged over 20 will not have had their vaccination history officially recorded.4

This means when children enter high school and are delivered vaccinations via school programs on the National Immunisation Program (NIP) the immunisation will now be recorded. Ultimately, aiding better, more targeted performance benchmarks for each state or territory.

Why is this important?

More data means a greater understanding of the impact of vaccination and the spread of vaccine-preventable diseases.

For example, while measles has been eradicated in Australia, it can be brought in by travellers returning from regions where the virus is still circulating. These travellers are often young adults who might have missed their measles mumps rubella (MMR) vaccine as a child, when vaccination records weren’t kept.

In other news

The new budget will see GPs incentivised to provide catch-up vaccinations to children who aren’t up-to-date, and a community awareness campaign to increase awareness of the National Immunisation Program and dispel myths about immunisation will be launched.5