Thursday, 8 February, 2018

Kids in Gippsland are now better protected against vaccine-preventable diseases with all but one local government area hitting the ambitious herd immunity target of 95 per cent – its best immunisation coverage in history.

Member for Eastern Victoria Region, Harriet Shing today announced the latest figures from the Australian Childhood Immunisation Register that show around 95% per cent of five-year-olds in the local community are now fully immunised.

LGA                                            % of children immunised
BawBaw Shire 95.36
East Gippsland Shire 95.08
Latrobe City 97.66
South Gippsland Shire 95.65
Bass Coast Shire 94.62


Since the introduction of the Andrews Labor Government’s tough No Jab No Play laws, there has been a consistent increase in immunisation rates for Victorian children.

Victoria’s immunisation rate has risen from 93 per cent in 2016, and at 95.3 per cent is the third highest rate in Australia behind smaller states of Tasmania and the ACT – across Australia the rate is 94.5 per cent.

The 95 per cent ‘herd immunity’ target is necessary to halt the spread of dangerous and virulent diseases such as measles. High rates of vaccination provide important protection for those who cannot receive vaccines, such as babies who are too young or people who cannot receive vaccines for medical reasons.

The Labor Government takes a strong approach to vaccination – we brought back the free whooping cough vaccination pro

gram for mums and dads in 2015, after it was axed by the former Liberal Government to protect our youngest Victorians from the deadly disease.

These record vaccination rates come as changes to strengthen No Jab No Play laws even further are in the Parliament.

These changes will mean only Immunisation History Statements from the Australian Immunisation Register will be accepted as evidence of immunisation and as evidence of medical exemption to vaccination when enrolling a child in childcare or kindergarten – no other document will be accepted.

This reduces the risk of potentially false vaccination exemptions being written up – which put community health and safety at risk – and will no longer be accepted for enrolment into early childhood facilities.  These changes also help simplify the enrolment process for early childhood providers.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Health Jill Hennessy:

“We know the more people who are vaccinated – the greater the protection for everyone. There is no debate. Immunisation is safe, effective and saves lives.”

“Despite rogue practitioners still trying to tout misinformation – Victorian parents are listening to science. And that’s great news.”

“Unlike the Liberals who axed the free whooping cough vaccination and cut a billion dollars from our health system, we’re putting the health of our kids and our community first.”

Quotes attributable to Member for Eastern Victoria Region, Harriet Shing:

“We know that vaccinations save lives, and that our sustained investment in community education has made a really positive difference.

These results show that our No Jab, No Play laws are protecting Victorian kids from deadly, vaccine-preventable diseases.”