Collecting Vaccination Data: Know Your Rights

Now that over 90% of Australians aged over 16 are vaccinated against COVID-19, do you really need to be concerned about the vaccination status of your employees, suppliers, and customers?

And, as a business owner, can you insist on them being vaccinated?

Do you need to sight and/or record the vaccination status of anyone who steps onto your premises?

So many questions.

The Australian Government’s policy is that COVID-19 vaccinations are voluntary for most Australians unless they work in or are visiting certain industries, such as residential aged care, health care, education, or they are care providers or airport workers. The requirements differ by State and Territory and are subject to change. You’ll find a handy reference point here.

Important to know is that vaccination status information is classified as ‘sensitive health information’ under the Privacy Act, which attracts high privacy protections.

As such, you should only collect information about the vaccination status of an employee or visitor to your premises if they consent and if the collection of this information is reasonably necessary for your functions or activities. Do not record this information on a ‘just in case’ basis. Additionally, you must ensure each person understands why you are collecting the information and how you are going to use it. Most importantly, they must freely consent to you collecting the information. Find out about your privacy obligations to your staff here.

Seek advice if you simply want anyone who works at or visits your premises to be vaccinated as a condition of entry, as this may be perceived as discrimination. Read about COVID-19 vaccinations and Australian federal discrimination law here.

Drowning in COVID Issues?

There’s no doubt that COVID-19 continues to place pressure on Australian business. At the Ayers Group, we can help free up your resources for this essential work by taking care of all your admin associated with payroll, contractor management and migration needs in one easy platform that integrates with your existing software. Talk to us today.