188.8.131.52 Immunisation - Approved Exemptions (FTB, CCB)
The evidence required to determine whether an individual has an exemption from immunisation is outlined later in this topic.
Approved exemptions from immunisation
An FTB child has an approved exemption from the FTB Part A and CCB immunisation requirements where:
- the child has a medical contraindication, or
- the child has natural immunity, or
- the child is a part of an approved vaccine study, or
- the vaccine is temporarily unavailable, or
- the child is vaccinated overseas, or
- the Secretary has determined that the child meets the immunisation requirements.
Medical contraindication occurs when a general practitioner determines that it is not in the best interests of the child's health to have the child immunised.
For an FTB child to meet the immunisation requirements by medical contraindication, a general practitioner must certify in writing on the approved form that immunising the child would be medically contraindicated under the specifications set out in the Australian Immunisation Handbook.
Example: A child who suffers from anaphylaxis following a previous dose of the relevant vaccine. If so, a general practitioner may certify that immunisation is medically contraindicated on the approved form.
For an FTB child to meet the immunisation requirements by natural immunity, a general practitioner must certify in writing on the approved form that the child does not require immunisation because they have acquired natural immunity as a result of contracting a disease or diseases.
Generally a natural immunity will only be applied to a specific antigen (not the whole schedule). A natural immunity should be applied for life (based on the clinical assessment of the general practitioner).
Example: A child who has previously contracted measles may have developed a natural immunity to contracting the disease again and therefore, does not need to be immunised against measles again.
Approved vaccine study
A child meets the immunisation requirements if the child is a participant in a vaccine study approved by a Human Research Ethics Committee registered with the National Health and Medical Research Council.
Temporary unavailability of vaccine
Where an FTB child is not vaccinated as required and the Commonwealth Chief Medical Officer has declared that the relevant vaccine/s (or all vaccines) are temporarily unavailable the child is considered to meet the immunisation requirements, provided that the child has received all other relevant vaccinations. A child meets the immunisation requirements on this basis only until such a time as the vaccine becomes available.
Act reference: FAAct section 6(4) Temporary unavailability of vaccine
Children vaccinated overseas
An FTB child who was vaccinated in another country meets the immunisation requirements if a recognised immunisation provider (1.1.R.09) completes and signs an immunisation history form for the vaccines administered overseas.
Act reference: FAAct section 6(5) Child vaccinated overseas
Secretary may determine a child meets immunisation requirements
The Secretary can determine a child meets the immunisation requirements where:
- the person with legal authority to make decisions about the medical treatment of the child does not consent to the child being immunised (the child must not be in the care of this person, and must be in the care of another individual under a child welfare law for the purposes of the FTB Part A supplement),
- taking action to meet the immunisation requirements would result in the individual or the child being at risk of family violence,
- the individual is a new permanent humanitarian visa holder and has not had the opportunity to immunise their child,
- the child has been vaccinated overseas and the child is otherwise unable to meet the immunisation requirements as they are unable to have a recognised immunisation provider certify the child has received the same level of immunisation overseas (FTB only), or
- where the child is at risk (CCB only).
Act reference: FAAct section 6(6) Secretary decision
Evidence required to determine exception/exemption
The table below explains the required evidence to determine whether an individual has an exemption from immunisation.
|Approved vaccine study||
|Temporary unavailability of vaccine||
|Child vaccinated overseas||
|Refusal of consent to vaccination||
|Risk of family violence||
|New humanitarian visa holder||
|Child overseas and remains overseas (FTB only)||
|Child is at risk (CCB only)||