A healthy start for school in 2020

04 February 2020

Hank Jongen

Hank Jongen is General Manager at the Department of Human Services.

Planners are encouraged to remind their clients of the Healthy Start for School heath checks and immunisation for children whose families are receiving Family Tax Benefit Part A.

Each year, the Department of Human Services writes to families receiving FTB Part A and an income support payment who have a child turning four, to remind them to arrange a health check for their child. It helps make sure children are healthy, fit and ready to learn when they start school.

To arrange a health check, your client can talk to their GP or health professional. Health checks can be completed from three years of age. They are conducted by State and Territory child and maternal health clinics or by a registered health professional, such as a local doctor, practice nurse or registered health worker.  

It’s important your client tells the Department of Human Services as soon as they have taken their child for a check-up, so their FTB Part A is not reduced. The easiest way for people to tell the Department about a health check is by using their Centrelink online account through myGov.

If there is a reason a health check cannot be completed for their child, they should call the Department on 136 150 as soon as possible to discuss.


It is also important all children and young adults under 20 years of age are up-to-date with their immunisations, according to the National Immunisation Program early childhood vaccination schedule, so their FTB Part A and Child Care Subsidy are not reduced.

The vaccination provider will update the Australian Immunisation Register with this information, so if their child is up-to-date, your client doesn’t need to do anything.

Child support assessment

On another note, I’d like to remind separated parents to extend their child support assessment if their child is continuing in full-time secondary study after they turn 18. They need to apply to have the assessment extended until the end of the school year in which they turn 18 and they must apply before their child turns 18.

Your client can apply for an extension by completing the child over 18 in full-time secondary education form or calling 131 272. For more information, click here.