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Tuesday, December 5, 2023

Victorian vaccination blitz aiming to keep vulnerable settings safe

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The Victorian Government is taking action to try to keep private aged care residents and staff, and people who live in residential disability settings, safe with a vaccination blitz to ensure workers in these vulnerable settings are protected against coronavirus.

From tomorrow (Wednesday June 2) to Sunday June 6, workers in private aged care facilities and the residential disability sector (which are managed by the Commonwealth) will be given priority access at walk-in vaccination hubs around Victoria between 9am and 4pm when they present evidence of their employment.

While the Commonwealth will continue to be responsible for in-reach in disability residential settings, Victoria will also work with providers to support access to state-run vaccination sites to increase the current low level of vaccinations.

Outbreaks across Australia have shown how fast coronavirus can spread across these sensitive facilities – and while all public sector residential aged care centres have been visited by state-run outreach teams for first vaccine doses, private facilities have lower vaccination rates and are significantly more susceptible to ongoing outbreaks.

Staff are eligible for either the Pfizer or AstraZeneca vaccines depending on their age. Priority access will be ensured by active queue management.

The following vaccination centres are participating in the five-day blitz:

  • Royal Exhibition Building
  • Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre (MCEC)
  • Sandown Racecourse
  • Melbourne Showgrounds
  • Former Ford Factory – Geelong
  • Bendigo Community Clinic
  • Ballarat Mercure Hotel and Convention Centre
  • Shepparton Showgrounds – McIntosh Centre
  • Traralgon Racecourse
  • Wodonga Vaccination Hub

Aged care and disability workers are already eligible to be vaccinated at state hubs and can continue to attend at any time during opening hours. However, this priority access five-day blitz will ensure they can be vaccinated quickly during peak periods and do not need to book in advance.

Victoria has experienced record vaccination uptake over the past week. In the week ending Sunday May 30, 95,676 doses were administered through state-run centres – an increase of 66 per cent over the previous week.

Since the Victorian Government expanded vaccine eligibility at state-run sites to those aged 40-49 on 28 May, more than 22,000 Victorians in that age group have received their first dose of the vaccine.

Vaccine capacity will increase in line with supply. Victorians are encouraged to continue booking their vaccine appointments through the Coronavirus Hotline on 1800 675 398 or by visiting walk-up centres if they are over 50.

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