In 2008 StateGovernment’s in Australia implementedmandatoryimmunization policies for health professionals working in clinical situations.Australia also has a Childhood Immunisation Schedule which recommendsthirteen vaccines be administered to infants beforetwo years of age. Thisarticle uses pertussis epidemiology as a case study to examine the evidencesupporting Australia’simmunization policies. It concludes that there is ashortage of reliableindependent evidence supporting these policies. Theresults of this research show that pertussis vaccine is not controlling theincidence of pertussis in the community nor the mortality and morbidity of thisdisease. It concludes that the implementation of mandatory immunizationpolicies is unethicalif it cannot be shown there is a serious risk to thecommunity if vaccinesare not used.
pertussis, epidemiology, immunization, mandatory, policies, public health
I would like to acknowledge Senior Lecturer Glenn Mitchell,AssociateProfessor Brian Martin and Associate Professor Peter Dingle for their directionin writing this article. I would also like to acknowledge the support given by agrowing number of parents and health professionals concerned aboutmandatory immunisation.