Media Release by The Hon Jenny Macklin MP

Maternity Immunisation Allowance – eligibility change

Joint Media Release with:

  • Nicola Roxon MP, Minister for Health and Ageing

The Australian Government will change the Maternity Immunisation Allowance (MIA) to encourage all parents to fully immunise their children before they start school.

From 1 January 2009 the Maternity Immunisation Allowance (MIA) will be paid in two instalments instead of one lump sum.

Families Minister Jenny Macklin and Health Minister Nicola Roxon said the $236.70 allowance was currently paid for children aged between 18 months and 2 years who are fully immunised or have received an approved exemption.

“The object of the change is to bring the MIA in line with the National Immunisation Program and provide an incentive for parents to ensure their four-year-old children also receive recommended boosters before they start school,” Ms Macklin said.

The MIA is not means-tested and aims to encourage parents to immunise their children.

“From 2009, the MIA will be divided equally into two payments for around 270,000 families who receive the entitlement each year,” Ms Roxon said. “Both instalments will be indexed twice yearly.”

“Under the change, the first MIA instalment will be made when the child is aged between 18 months and 2 years. The second will be paid when the child is aged between 4 years, 3 months, and 5 years.”

Vaccinations for four-year-olds as recommended in the National Immunisation Program currently include:

  • diphtheria, tetanus and whooping cough
  • measles, mumps and German measles
  • polio.

The MIA is one of a range of Australian Government payments that support families with their work and family responsibilities.