Australian Childhood Immunisation Register for health professionals
What you need to know
We administer the Australian Childhood Immunisation Register (the ACIR) on behalf of the Department of Health. The ACIR is a national register that records details of vaccinations given to children under 7 years of age who live in Australia. Immunisation details are sent to the ACIR by recognised immunisation providers.
- is used to monitor immunisation coverage levels and service delivery, and to identify regions at risk during disease outbreaks
- can provide reports to you upon request to help identify children who are due or overdue for immunisation
- makes an information payment to you if you administer and notify the ACIR of a vaccination which completes 1 of the aged-based immunisation schedules funded under the National Immunisation Program
Data from the ACIR:
- enables you, as an immunisation provider, to check on the immunisation status of an individual child, regardless of where the child was immunised
- forms the basis of an Immunisation History Statement which informs parents and guardians of their child's recorded immunisation history
- provides information about a child's immunisation status to help determine eligibility for the Australian Government's Child Care Benefit and Family Tax Benefit Part A Supplement payments
- provides a measure of coverage at a national, state and territory and local level
Immunisation provider payments
An information payment is made to you if you administer and notify the ACIR of a vaccination that completes 1 of the age based immunisation schedules funded under the National Immunisation Program.
- The information payment amount is up to $6 per completed schedule
- Information payments to providers are made by Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) at the end of each calendar month
- You need to complete a bank account details for immunisation providers form advising ACIR of your bank account or credit union details to receive payment. You can also supply these details when you register as an immunisation provider with the ACIR
- You can amend your bank account details on the ACIR through HPOS or by completing the bank account details for immunisation providers form
- You will receive a Statement of Payment listing the payments made for the information received by the ACIR. The statement also includes the details of any services where the ACIR requires additional information
The Department of Health administers the Immunise Australia Program. The program aims to increase national immunisation rates by funding free vaccination programs under the National Immunisation Program and communicating information about immunisation to the public and health professionals. The National Immunisation Program Schedule specifies at what ages children in Australia should receive certain vaccinations.
For a complete list of the recommended childhood vaccination milestones, view the current immunisation schedule. For more information about immunisation specific to your state or territory, visit your state health department website.
Each state and territory health department provides specific jurisdictional information about immunisation.
Parents and guardians can ask you to assist them with getting an exemption to having their child immunised. This can help them meet the immunisation requirements for the Child Care Benefit and Family Tax Benefit Part A Supplement family assistance payments.
The available immunisation exemptions are:
- Conscientious objection to immunisation – the parent has a personal, philosophical, religious or medical belief that immunisation should not occur. For the conscientious objection to be valid, you must also sign the Immunisation exemption conscientious objection form to certify you have explained the benefits and risks of immunisation to the parent
- Medical contraindication – you make the decision that the child cannot be immunised due to a medical condition. You can complete the Immunisation exemption medical contraindication form to identify which vaccines the child cannot receive and whether the contraindication is temporary or permanent
- Natural immunity to a disease – you can send a letter to the ACIR on your letterhead outlining that you believe the child does not require a vaccine because they have a natural immunity to the disease. The ACIR can only accept this notification from general practitioners
Children who are under 7 years of age and enrolled in Medicare are automatically included on the ACIR. Children who are not eligible to enrol in Medicare can be added to the ACIR when details of a vaccination are received from you, as the doctor or immunisation provider.
To ensure the accuracy of our data, it is important to remind parents to notify Medicare of any change to their address.
If you are a general practitioner, you are automatically recognised as an immunisation provider and are authorised to send or receive immunisation data from the ACIR. When sending information to the ACIR, supply your Medicare provider number for the location where the vaccination is performed.
Other immunisation providers
If you are not a general practitioner, you may still be recognised as an immunisation provider. You need to complete the application to register as an immunisation provider form and send it to your state or territory health department for approval. When ACIR receives the approved form, a unique ACIR registration number is allocated to identify you as an immunisation provider.
You will receive a letter detailing your ACIR registration number. Use this number when you send immunisation details to the ACIR.
Submitting immunisation information
You can submit the details of vaccinations given to children under 7 years of age to be recorded on the ACIR.
The ACIR cannot accept immunisation details from parents or guardians. Only you, as recognised immunisation providers can submit immunisation data to the ACIR. Vaccinations that have been given to a child while overseas can only be recorded on the ACIR if they are notified by an immunisation provider practising in Australia.
You're encouraged to submit information to the ACIR each week at a minimum. Delays in submitting data can result in incomplete Immunisation History Statements being sent to parents, and the loss of a family's eligibility for the Child Care Benefit and Family Tax Benefit Part A Supplement payments.
You should only send details of vaccinations given to children under 7 years of age. Only vaccinations given after 1 January 1996, when the ACIR started operation, can be recorded.
When submitting vaccination information to the ACIR, supply the child's Medicare card number and reference number, as well as the child's name and date of birth.
If the child is not enrolled in Medicare, supply the child's full name, date of birth, gender and address so that an accurate record can be created on the ACIR.
How to submit information
When a vaccination is given to a child, details should be submitted promptly to be included on the ACIR.
Information can be submitted to the ACIR using:
- Medicare Online - a software application that allows the transmission of ACIR data via the immunisation provider's desktop software. For more information about Medicare Online, contact 1800 700 199
- Health Professional Online Services (HPOS) - approved immunisation providers can submit immunisation details using the Identify Child and Record Encounter function through the ACIR secure area within HPOS
- Manually - by completing either an Immunisation encounter form or an Immunisation history form and sending it to Medicare
Accessing ACIR information using HPOS
If you are an authorised immunisation provider, you can access the immunisation history of an individual child through the ACIR secure area of HPOS. You can also access a range of immunisation reports from this site.
Visit the HPOS website to register or log on to the ACIR.
Accessing ACIR information over the phone
If consent has been given by the child's parent or guardian, you can also contact the ACIR on 1800 653 809 to obtain a child's immunisation details over the phone.
The ACIR takes all possible care to avoid adding to the distress of bereaved parents. If you are aware of the death of a child, you can inform the ACIR by sending the details on your practice stationery or by contacting the ACIR on 1800 653 809.
Reports available from the ACIR secure website
The Australian Childhood Immunisation Register (ACIR) produces a series of statistical, identified and access reports for immunisation providers registered to use the ACIR secure website.
National due and overdue rules for childhood immunisation
The National due and overdue rules for childhood immunisation provides information on the ACIR’s rules, based on the Australian Immunisation Handbook, and is made available to help you better understand the operations of the ACIR.
Immunisation stationery order forms
Order form for Northern Territory and Queensland immunisation providers to order ACIR immunisation stationery.
Order form for New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia, Western Australia, Tasmania and Australian Capital Territory immunisation providers to order ACIR immunisation stationery.
Australian Childhood Immunisation Register vaccine code formats
Vaccine codes are available for software vendors to build into software products that can send immunisation claims to the Australian Childhood Immunisation Register (ACIR) through Medicare online claiming.