Conscientious objection’s role in vax rates revealed

Data released today by the National Health Performance Authority (NHPA) revealed 75,002 Australian children are not fully immunised with 14,869 having a conscientious objection recorded.

Across five-year-old children the percentage of children registered under conscientious objector provisions ranged from close to 0.0% in Far West NSW up to 7.1% in Sunshine Coast.

The number of children aged one, two and five years combined with a conscientious objection recorded ranged from fewer than six in Far West NSW to 761 in North Coast NSW.

Dr Martin McNamara, executive director of healthy communities for NHPA, said the conscientious objectors were spread unevenly across the country and it was not possible to deduce explanations for the variations from this inaugural set of figures.

“Circumstances within these postcodes are going to vary. There is a unique picture and unique challenges in each local community,” he said.

Fiona