House debates

Monday, 22 February 2021

Questions without Notice

COVID-19: Vaccination

2:36 pm

Photo of Lucy WicksLucy Wicks (Robertson, Liberal Party) Share this | | Hansard source

My question is to the Minister for the National Disability Insurance Scheme and Minister for Government Services. Will the minister please inform the House about what the Morrison government is doing to ensure the systems supporting our Australian vaccine rollout are ready?

Ms Ryan interjecting

Photo of Tony SmithTony Smith (Speaker) Share this | | Hansard source

The member for Lalor will cease interjecting. She didn't interject at all last week. That's because she wasn't here. We don't want her to let everyone know she's back in that fashion. The minister has the call.

Photo of Stuart RobertStuart Robert (Fadden, Liberal Party, Minister for the National Disability Insurance Scheme) Share this | | Hansard source

Let me thank the member for Robertson for her question and all the hard work she's doing with the Central Coast to prepare them for the vaccination rollout. As the House is aware, the Australian Immunisation Register will be the basis of record for Australians receiving the COVID vaccine. Services Australia has been working hard to ensure that it's well prepared to handle the increase in vaccination providers that will be accessing the register. The register has undergone substantial upgrades in preparation for the vaccine rollout. It already allows you to see your recorded immunisations in the immunisation history statement through myGov or the Express Plus Medicare app. We'll be monitoring the performance of that very closely. In fact, 5.6 million immunisation history statements were securely accessed by individuals last financial year. I'm sure the member for McMahon would like to hear that, as most parents in the House would. As we're required to provide records of immunisation histories for our schoolkids when they go on camps or other excursions, this is where so many millions of Australian parents have gone.

The register will be the unifying national system used to monitor immunisation coverage and the immunisation status for vaccines. Services Australia will play a critical role in the program by ensuring that healthcare providers can record the vaccinations on the register and individuals can access that immunisation history as proof of their vaccine. All vaccines recorded on the register will appear on a citizen's immunisation history statement, which citizens can print out or send digitally by email or SMS. Indeed, individuals like Jane, who was the first Australian to receive the vaccine, can access their immunisation history statement through a variety of means. They can get it through their vaccination provider, they can get it by contacting Services Australia and they can log into the Express Plus Medicare app or myGov. Those are four different pathways to ensure all Australians can have access to their immunisation history.

Australians can take action right now, digitally. They can link their myGov and their Medicare digital accounts. This will help them get ready for the vaccination. If they've already linked Medicare to myGov, I'd ask Australians to please ensure that their details are up to date. Already, 19.7 million Australians have an active myGov account, and 9.9 million Australians have linked this to Medicare. It's a great time for those Australians who have not yet created a myGov account to do that, and to link Medicare and other services, to be as prepared for the vaccine rollout as possible.