Healthy Communities: Immunisation rates for children in 2015–16 - Report - Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children

Healthy Communities: Immunisation rates for children in 2015–16

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Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people suffer a disproportionate burden from communicable diseases (diseases that can be transmitted from person to person), with rates of hospitalisation and illness due to these conditions many times higher than other Australians.1

This section presents results for children who were identified as Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander on the AIR. These data are based on Medicare enrolment records.

For Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children, national immunisation rates in 2015–16 for 1 and 2 year olds were lower than the rates for all children (89.8% compared with 93.0% for 1 year olds, and 87.7% compared with 90.7% for 2 year olds). In contrast, the national immunisation rate for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children aged 5 years was higher than the rate for all children (94.6% compared with 92.9%).

Primary Health Network areas

In 2015–16, the percentages of fully immunised Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children varied across PHN areas for all three age groups as shown in Figure 6. The range in immunisation rates across PHN areas for the three age groups is outlined below.

  • 1 year olds - 94.2% in Tasmania to 76.1% in Perth North (WA)
  • 2 year olds - 93.4% in South Western Sydney (NSW) to 76.0% in Perth South (WA)
  • 5 year olds - 98.8% in Gold Coast (Qld) to 89.4% in Western Victoria.

Statistical Areas Level 4 (SA4s)

For Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children, Statistical Areas Level 4 (SA4s) were used instead of SA3s as the smallest geographic areas. There are larger populations in SA4s and this allows more reliable reporting for smaller population groups such as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children.

Across more than 80 SA4s, the percentage of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children fully immunised in 2015–16 varied considerably:

  • 1 year olds - ranged from 95.9% in Central Coast (NSW) to 72.4% in Perth–North West (WA)
  • 2 year olds - ranged from 96.0% in Coffs Harbour–Grafton (NSW) to 71.2% in Perth–South East (WA)
  • 5 year olds - ranged from 100% in Murray (NSW) to 87.6% in Perth–South East (WA).

Figure 6: Percentage of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children fully immunised and numbers not fully immunised, by Primary Health Network area, 2015–16

The following link expands the table data. Show tabular data Hide tabular data
Primary Health Network 1 year 2 years 5 years No. not fully immunised (1, 2, & 5 years combined)
Gold Coast (Qld) 91.6% 88.1% 98.8% 40
Nepean Blue Mountains (NSW) 92.5% 89.0% 97.5% 46
South Eastern NSW) 91.6% 90.8% 97.1% 100
Hunter New England & Central Coast (NSW) 93.8% 91.3% 96.5% 276
Western NSW 90.4% 88.0% 96.3% 215
Northern Queensland 87.0% 88.2% 96.1% 554
Murrumbidgee (NSW) 92.5% 88.4% 95.8% 67
Country SA 91.2% 86.6% 95.8% 102
North Western Melbourne (Vic) 90.2% 84.7% 95.6% 76
Country WA 87.6% 88.1% 95.6% 345
Tasmania 94.2% 90.0% 95.5% 84
Murray (Vic & part NSW) 88.6% 88.6% 95.3% 114
North Coast (NSW) 92.1% 90.8% 95.3% 141
South Eastern Melbourne (Vic) 93.1% 88.0% 94.6%# 35
Northern Territory 93.0% 87.9% 94.1% 324
Brisbane South (Qld) 86.7% 88.5% 94.0% 176
South Western Sydney (NSW) 91.6% 93.4% 93.8% 65
Gippsland (Vic) 91.7% 86.8% 93.8% 32
Western Queensland 87.4% 86.0% 93.3% 114
Brisbane North (Qld) 89.3% 88.8% 93.1% 155
Central Qld, Wide Bay & Sunshine Coast 89.1% 85.2% 92.9% 262
Eastern Melbourne (Vic) 90.7% 90.1% 92.8% 39
Western Sydney (NSW) 87.9% 84.7% 92.8% 98
Adelaide (SA) 90.3% 84.6% 92.7% 142
Darling Downs & West Moreton (Qld) 89.8% 86.3% 92.2% 227
Australian Capital Territory 93.5% 83.6% 91.4% 42
Central & Eastern Sydney (NSW) 92.7% 88.3% 90.8% 60
Perth North (WA) 76.1% 80.1% 90.1% 194
Perth South (WA) 81.1% 76.0% 89.6% 252
Western Victoria 93.8% 86.2% 89.4% 53
Northern Sydney (NSW) 97.2%# 94.3%# 87.5%# 7
National results 89.8% 87.7% 94.6% 4,438

# Interpret with caution: This area’s eligible population is between 26 and 100 registered children.

Notes

  • Components may not add to totals due to rounding.
  • Data are reported to one decimal place, however for graphical display and ordering they are plotted unrounded.
  • These data reflect results for children recorded as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander on the AIR. Levels of recording may vary between local areas.

Source Australian Institute of Health and Welfare analysis of Department of Human Services, Australian Immunisation Register statistics, for the period 1 April 2015 to 31 March 2016, assessed as at 30 June 2016. Data supplied 2 March 2017.

1. Menzies R, Turnour C, Chiu C, McIntyre P 2008. Vaccine preventable diseases and vaccination coverage in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, Australia, 2003 to 2006. Communicable Diseases Intelligence 32 Supplement: S2-67.

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