Vaccine injected

Vaccine injected

COVID vaccines have started rolling out across East Gippsland.
Aged care residents and some staff were the first to receive their first dose last Thursday in Orbost.
“A total of 26 residents and seven high risk staff, including one GP received their first COVID-19 vaccination last Thursday,” Orbost Regional Health chief executive officer, Vicki Farthing, said.  
“Ten staff from the Gippsland Public Health Unit (GPHU) travelled from Traralgon to Orbost to run the vaccination clinics in Lochiel House and Waratah Lodge on the day. We were very lucky to have such a well-rehearsed team of staff visit our facilities for the vaccination clinics, who made our residents and staff feel as relaxed as possible.  
“The clinics ran very smoothly with no hiccups along the way. None of the residents or staff vaccinated had adverse reactions to the vaccinations given.  All of those vaccinated will receive their second dose in the next two to three weeks.”
The vaccinations are being administered at general practices as well as by the Gippsland Respiratory Clinics and Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services.
All Australians will have access to the vaccine, however initially, doses are limited so priority groups will be among the first to receive the vaccine.
Gippsland Primary Health Network chief executive officer, Amanda Proposch, said the general practices approved by the Australian Department of Health to participate in Phase 1b of the vaccine rollout would receive supply of vaccines progressively over the coming weeks.
“It is important for all of us, as a community, to understand that this is a considered phased approach, in response to the supply and availability of the vaccine which will become more and more as the vaccine is produced in Australia,” Ms Proposch said.
“In Phase 1b, eligible people include anyone over 70 years old, healthcare workers, younger adults with an underlying condition and high-risk workers like emergency services personnel and meat processing workers. It also includes Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who are over 55.”
People can use the Australian Government’s COVID-19 vaccine eligibility checker to find out when they can expect to receive a COVID-19 vaccine and if they are eligible for Phase 1b, how to then find the location of the nearest vaccination clinic and how to book.

IMAGE: Last Thursday, March 18, residents of Waratah Lodge and Lochiel House as well as a handful of Orbost Regional Health staff were the first in the community to receive their COVID-19 Pfizer vaccine from the Gippsland Public Health Unit at Latrobe Regional Health. Orbost’s Jill Shanahan was the first to receive her vaccine from vaccinator Sami Green. (PS)


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