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Monday, 22 June 2009
Page: 6839


Mr Lindsay asked the Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations, in writing, on 28 May 2009:

(1)   Since 1 April 2004, how many public servants have received the influenza vaccine administered by their workplace, and how many of these employees have reported having adverse reactions to it?

(2)   What workers’ compensation arrangements are in place for Commonwealth employees who report adverse reactions to the influenza vaccine administered by their workplace?

(3)   Is there consistency across Commonwealth departments concerning the workers’ compensation payable for adverse reactions to the influenza vaccine when administered by the workplace; if not, what are the specific details, by department, of all payments made whether under workers’ compensation legislation or by other arrangements, since 1 April 2004?


Ms Gillard (Minister for Education, Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations and Minister for Social Inclusion) —The answer to the honourable member’s question is as follows:

(1)   Comcare has no data on the number of public servants who may have received the influenza vaccine through their workplace since 1 April 2004.

Since 1 April 1994, Comcare has received five notifications under the Occupational Health and Safety Act 1991 of adverse reactions by employees to influenza vaccines provided by their employers.

(2)   The Safety, Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 1988 provides access to workers' compensation benefits for Australian and ACT Government employees who have an injury that arose out of or in the course of their employment. Any such employee can lodge a claim with Comcare and Comcare will determine if compensation is payable based on the available medical and other evidence.

(3)   The Safety Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 1988 provides the consistent basis for compensation for any injury that arises out of or in the course of Commonwealth employment.