More than 1300 Australians, including 400 parents, gave their views in Australia's first national survey of attitudes to vaccination, commissioned to coincide with the release of a new television documentary on vaccines.

The survey, conducted by Australia Online Research, found that 53 per cent of parents had general concerns about vaccinating their children. Of those concerned parents, 45 per cent chose to vaccinate anyway, while 8 per cent withheld or delayed vaccines.

One in four parents were worried about a specific aspect of vaccination, with an increasing number of vaccines, ''inadequate safety testing'' and fears a child's immune system could be overloaded among the most common.

Survey adviser Associate Professor Julie Leask, of the National Centre for Immunisation Research and Surveillance at the University of Sydney, said overseas research had shown that people with higher levels of education were more likely to oppose vaccination.