Rubella vaccines are on the Australian Immunisation Schedule and recommended for

  • children ≥12 months of age
  • adolescents and adults born during or since 1966 who have not received 2 doses of rubella-containing vaccine, particularly
    • healthcare workers
    • childhood educators and carers
    • women of child-bearing age who are seronegative for rubella

The disease

  • Pregnant women who contract rubella are at high risk of early pregnancy loss, miscarriage, and still birth.
  • 90% of babies exposed to Rubella (German measles) in the first few months (first trimester) of pregnancy will get Congenital Rubella Syndrome.
  • Congential Rubella Syndrome causes, amongst other things, cataracts, loss of vision, loss of hearing, intellectual disabilities, heart abnormalities.

The vaccine

Rubella-containing vaccine is recommended for children at 12 months of age as (measles-mumps-rubella) vaccine and at 18 months of age as (measles-mumps-rubella-varicella) vaccine.

All adolescents and adults born during or since 1966 should have either:

  • documented evidence of 2 doses of rubella-containing vaccine given at least 4 weeks apart and with both doses given ≥12 months of age, or
  • serological evidence of immunity to measles, mumps and rubella



  • For more reading about the disease and the vaccine please see here.
  • For more information about rubella in pregnancy, please see here, and here, 
Page reviewed November 2018.
Print Friendly, PDF & Email