NSW Health Minister Jillian Skinner says immunisation rates in richer areas may be low due to busy working mums forgetting to vaccinate their children.
Busy working mums forgetting to vaccinate their children could be the reason why immunisation rates are lower in affluent NSW suburbs.
New figures released on Thursday ranked well-to-do NSW areas, such as The Rocks, Manly and Byron Bay, amongst the worst performers in terms of vaccination rates for kids.
The National Health Performance Authority data also showed the seven worst post codes in the nation were in NSW.
State Health Minister Jillian Skinner said those figures were “concerning”.
“My plea is to parents,” she told reporters.
“Consider the effect of whooping cough on a baby or measles on a toddler, and you will seriously know the value of vaccination.”
Ms Skinner said the poor results in the more affluent suburbs could be due to the higher numbers of working mums in those areas who are “distracted by other responsibilities”.
“People are very busy (and) they forget the routine scheduling,” she said.
The minister criticised anti-vaccine groups for scaring people away and doing a “terrible disservice to the community”.
Opposition health spokesman Andrew McDonald went a step further, blasting the controversial anti-vaccine lobby the Australian Vaccination-Skeptics Network as “evil”.
The group was recently forced to change its name from the Australian Vaccination Network by inserting the word “skeptics”.