START A PETITION 27,000,000 members: the world's largest community for good
2,263,198 people care about Health Policy

Australia Cracks Down on Parents Against Vaccinations

Australia Cracks Down on Parents Against Vaccinations

There is good news on the vaccine front out of Australia. This week, the Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd announced that parents who refuse to vaccinate their children will no longer be eligible to receive an end-of-the-year tax benefit.

This isn’t a giant change in policy, but it’s meaningful. Since last year, parents who don’t vaccinate their children have been excluded from this $726 per child benefit. However, parents who registered as “conscientious objectors” have received it.

No more, under the Australian government’s new policy. Now, only medical and religious exemptions will be allowed.

Ever since a now-discredited study was published linking the MMR vaccine to autism, there has been a backlash against immunization. The resistance to vaccines has gone world wide. This is important in an increasingly connected world. It may not seem like a big deal to get the measles vaccine in your particular locality. Maybe no one has had the disease for years. But if you travel around the world, or you come in contact with an infected tourist, things could get bad quickly.

In fact, that’s what happened in New South Wales just last year. According to the Government of Western Australia Department of Health:

A young adult returning home from overseas while infectious with measles caused the NSW outbreak in April. This person transmitted the virus to other susceptible contacts, which resulted in further clusters of cases in metropolitan Sydney.

In Australia, most measles cases occur in unvaccinated people who are infected overseas. However, most of the recent NSW cases had no history of overseas travel. This indicates the disease was spread within the local community to people who were unvaccinated or not fully vaccinated.

Children under five years old had the highest notification rate, mainly because of transmission to infants who are too young to be vaccinated.

This is why efforts to increase immunization rates is so important. The purpose is not necessarily to save the life of a healthy adult; it’s to protect people who are too young to be vaccinated or too sick to be vaccinated.

Vaccines have been proven over and over to be safe and effective. It’s heartening the see this reaffirmed by the Australian government. In a way, the effectiveness of modern vaccines is a reason why we can sometimes forget about how important they are.

“We’re very lucky that in Australia so many of these diseases have almost disappeared that sometimes people become a bit complacent,” [said Federal Health Minister Tanya Plibersek].

The fact remains that vaccines prevent diseases that used to commonly kill people, especially children. It’s important to maintain herd immunity by getting the immunization rates as high as possible.

The Australian government’s move to increase immunization rates is only the latest in steps taken to combat the anti-vaccination movement. Earlier this year, the Chiropractic Board decided to crack down on chiropractors who propagate misinformation about vaccines.


Read more: , , , ,

Photo Credit: Thinkstock

have you shared this story yet?

some of the best people we know are doing it


+ add your own
7:05PM PDT on Sep 16, 2013


4:51AM PDT on Sep 1, 2013

@ Nicholas K: Yeah, we are born with an immune system. Too bad this creator of yours made it that another thing it created killed 35% of the people who caught it and scarred if not debilitated many more for life

The issues in Texas and Australia show what happens WHEN you stop vaccinations.

But as others have pointed out, your tin foil hat and undies don't block mind control waves, it's like a potato in the oven, your brains are being fried

4:00AM PDT on Sep 1, 2013

You are the only sheeple in town Nikolas K. Worry not, the tin foil hat box is in the centre of the room. Collect yours now if you really believe that big pharma is making up measles stories in Texas and Australia. Ever hear of the media, where reporters can go out and check out the facts? You can't hide facts and medical records and children infected with measles.It's all a 'Plot'. Sure, sure. The only muddy pond is your logic not to mention your attempt to muddy the waters with illogical assumptions.

Lindsey O, he is far too busy looking for plots hatching. He must collect them like eggs, everything is a conspiracy. It's Easter for him every day and he is collecting fresh new plots. I hope at least they taste like chocolate.

2:51AM PDT on Sep 1, 2013

Well, Nikolas, most dentists (like most other healthcare professionals) do tend to promote things they believe will better the patient's health. That's their job.

Rather like my veterinarian recommending that I cut back on one of my cats' calories since she's overweight. He could make more money off a cat who has bad health from overweight, but it's his job to help keep her healthy.

2:40AM PDT on Sep 1, 2013

The medical system by insisting that vaccines are the only way to go is to say the creator has got it all wrong. we are born with an immune system and when we suppress with vaccines we end up as a lifelong customer of the medical mafia which is the whole objective of this exercise. Like fluride in water being promoted as good for teeth. if its so good why would dentist promote it and put themselves out of a job. we need more dentist today than we ever did.

2:36AM PDT on Sep 1, 2013

The Australian government who are using tax as a bribe are in breach of our constitution as this is tantamount to practising medicine without a licence or diagnosis. Also its against trade practices act to force anyone to do business with them ie medical business. its reasons such as this is why we should not vote for any politician just sack them all so we get a new election with all new candidates. see youtube story A muddy pond called Australia.

2:31AM PDT on Sep 1, 2013

Interesting that America is posting the same story about someone coming home from overseas and causing a measles outbreak in NSW. In America the same story says the outbreak is in Texas. This is more scare mongering to prop up the hold of big Pharma over the sheeples who fall for their crap and pay up.

3:50PM PDT on Aug 31, 2013

Thank you Mara C, that is it in a nutshell...there can be side effects. Sometimes side effects cause horrific consequences or death. The same goes for side effects of various medicines be they artificially produced or plant based herbal combinations. Sad, when one ends up dead, sick or you lose a loved one because of it but compared to millions of others suffering mild side effects or no side effects and benefit from the medications or vaccines then certainly having little polio and other diseases in the world is worth it. Some people are even violently allergic to bee stings or peanuts but most people don't avoid honey, eggs or peanuts because of ill effects that some will have. For corporations being careless in producing any medicine or vaccine let them be held accountable but for the most part most benefit from vaccinations.

3:18PM PDT on Aug 31, 2013

Once and for all - vaccines may cause some unwelcome side effects, but they have, throughout history, helped to eradicate disease!

7:03PM PDT on Aug 30, 2013

Colum N standing primly, perched aloft on his Column of Disinformation, grim and morose, looks down upon the great unwashed and uninformed. He pontificates:

"Vaccines are death in a needle."

Intriguing. I am 57. Or at least I thought that I was 57. Perhaps this has been an illusion all along and I am really part of the vast army of the Walking Undead! Hitherto unknown, but now exposed to the world! Thanks must go to Colum N for revealing the unknown world of: The Vaccination Zombies! An injection force poised for the untimely invasion of the world!

add your comment

Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

Care2 - Be Extraordinary - Start a Care2 Petition
ads keep care2 free

Recent Comments from Causes

Going to the Global March for the Elephants!

I don't much like the idea of using the resulting waste as fertilizer. I had a big problem with mealworms,…

what an awesome man, thanks for sharing this story :)

ads keep care2 free

Select names from your address book   |   Help

We hate spam. We do not sell or share the email addresses you provide.

site feedback


Problem on this page? Briefly let us know what isn't working for you and we'll try to make it right!