The Andrews Labor Government has launched a new campaign to reinforce how immunisation saves lives and keeps children safe from deadly diseases.
Acting Premier James Merlino today joined Minister for Health Jill Hennessy, in the City of Port Phillip, to launch the campaign and remind parents to ensure their children are fully immunised before heading back to childcare and school after the holiday season.
The Labor Government’s tough new No Jab, No Play law requires all Victorian children to have a record of immunisation to be enrolled in childcare and kindergarten, unless they have a medical reason.
Currently, 93.5 per cent of Victorian children under five are fully immunised, however in many parts of the state immunisation rates are still far too low, with some suburbs falling below 90 per cent.
More needs to be done to increase coverage and reach the 95 per cent ‘herd immunity’ required to halt the spread of dangerous and virulent diseases such as measles.
Despite scientific evidence proving they are safe and effective, and have saved millions of lives, around 25 per cent of people still have concerns about vaccines.
From 15 January, a new campaign promoting the benefits of immunisation and the No Jab No Play laws by telling real-life stories will hit TV screens, radio, cinemas, online and social media.
It also encourages parents to keep immunisations up-to-date, with the Government’s VaxOnTime app available for download to help busy parents keep track of when their child’s vaccinations are due.
The campaign aims to motivate parents concerned about vaccines to find out more from reputable sources and learn about the importance of immunisation.
To learn more about immunisation visit www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/immunisation
Quotes attributable to Acting Premier James Merlino
“The scientific evidence is crystal clear – vaccines are safe and there is simply no excuse for not immunising your child.”
“With people heading back to work and childcare starting up again it’s critical that parents make sure their child’s vaccinations are up to date – and this campaign will provide an important reminder.”
Quotes attributable to Minister for Health Jill Hennessy
“We know immunisation has the power to save lives. That’s why we want as many children as possible to be immunised and protected from life-threatening illnesses.”
“If parents have concerns about vaccinations we want them to talk to their GP or their local government immunisation provider – don’t rely on unfounded and misleading claims on the internet that will put kids’ lives at risk.”
Quotes attributable to City of Port Phillip Mayor Bernadene Voss
“As a passionate supporter, promoter and provider of immunisation, Port Phillip Council warmly welcomes the Victorian Government’s campaign launch.”
“We hope this campaign will encourage members of our community whose children are not fully immunised to pick up the phone or check our website for information about the free community immunisation program available at venues across Port Phillip.”