NZ unlikely to adopt Australia's 'no jab, no pay' immunisation policy

The "no jab, no pay" immunisation policy announced across the Tasman appears to have little support in New Zealand.

Syringe. Source: 1 NEWS

Australian parents who refuse to vaccinate could lose thousands of dollars a year in benefits after their government directed them to immunise children or face slashed entitlements.

The policy will close a legislative loophole and mean Australians who refuse to vaccinate their children will be denied up to $15,000 a year. They will not receive the $200-a-week childcare benefit, the $7500-a-year childcare rebate or the $726 Family Tax Benefit A annual supplement.

"We are reducing the grounds on which people can object to having their children immunised, in future they will only be able to continue to receive childcare payments and the family tax benefit part a supplement if their children are unimmunised on religious or medical grounds," Mr Abbott says.

Currently around 39,000 Australian children under seven don't have their injections and the country's vaccination rate sits at 90 per cent.

"Vaccinations are not about ideology, they're actually about hard science and outcomes," Australian Medical Association vice president Dr Stephen Parnis says.

New Zealand's immunisation rate is 94% and the local Medical Association sees no need for a similar policy.

"The vast bulk of parents take the important step to vaccinate their children and I applaud them for that, but there should be an element of personal choice I tend to think," John Key says.

But across the Tasman some parents say vaccinating children is not the government's call.

Tasha David from Vaccination Sceptics says it's an attack on basic human rights.

"You have the right to feed your child, you have the right to make medical decisions," she says.

But Mr Abbott's radical policy has even won the support of the opposition. who say hitting parents in the pocket is justified if it protects the health of all children.