Political stoush continues over speed of vaccine rollout

Astra Zeneca vaccine. Source: Wikimedia Commons

More than 500 General Practices (GPs) across Australia, including two on the Central Coast, are set to administer the Pfizer vaccine.

Federal Liberal Member for Robertson, Lucy Wicks, said the sites were in addition to the Central Coast (Erina) Respiratory and Vaccination Clinic and COVID-19 Vaccination Clinics at Gosford and Wyong hospitals.

“This will enable more people across the Central Coast to access the Pfizer vaccine through their GP, helping to accelerate the rollout for people under 60 in our region,” Wicks said.

“This is just the start of the Pfizer roll-out to GPs, with more locations to be announced across Australia, and the Central Coast in the coming weeks.

“With more supplies of Pfizer becoming available, it is expected all 5,100 GPs participating in the vaccine rollout will have the opportunity to administer the Pfizer vaccine by later this year.

“I encourage anyone across the Central Coast who is eligible to come forward and receive their COVID-19 vaccine, which will help protect you, your loved ones and our community.

“The two local GPs included in the first week of the roll-out will be contacting their existing patients who are eligible to receive Pfizer.”

But Member for Dobell, Emma McBride, said supply was still a major problem in the vaccination rollout.

“The Health Minister said Australia was at the front of the queue for vaccine deals, but we’re not,” McBride said.

“We’re falling behind the rest of the world when it comes to vaccinations, with Australia currently ranked last in the OCED for fully vaccinated adults.

“On the Central Coast, where one in five locals are aged over 65, GPs are struggling to get more doses and pharmacies are missing out on the rollout altogether.

“The Prime Minister said the vaccine rollout ‘isn’t a race’, but it is; a race against this virus and its deadly variants, and a race to save our economy.

“As a pharmacist of 20 years, I want to see the vaccine rollout fast-tracked and expanded, including through community pharmacies so we can get more jabs in arms and keep the Coast safe.”

The State Opposition has also called for pharmacies to play a greater role in the vaccination rollout.

With just over a quarter of the NSW population having been vaccinated thus far against COVID-19, Shadow Health Minister, Ryan Park, is also urging the NSW Government to work with the Federal Government to provide vaccination incentives.

With a population of 8.16 million, latest figures show that 2,401,763 vaccinations have been administered in the state since February.

Of these, 921,659 were administered by NSW Health and the remainder by the GP network and other providers.

Park said he has suggested to the NSW Health Minister that those who get fully vaccinated be given additional Dine & Discover vouchers.

“Our vaccination rollout is simply going too slow(ly) and we need to dramatically increase the number of people getting vaccinated and this measure will help to do just that,” Park said.

Terry Collins

1 Comment on "Political stoush continues over speed of vaccine rollout"

  1. I don’t think the vaccine roll out has been too slow – it’s the Australian people who are too slow to go and get it in my view. Four of my relatives and two neighbours (one on each side of me) are amongst those who are taking their time to NOT go and get their vaccine – their ages are 60, 40, 47, 56, 51 and 53 so they are not the young but the mid to older generations taking their time. I personally went out and got it as soon as I could and I’ve encouraged my husband and children to do the same but a lot of Australians are just dancing with death in my view by not going to get their vaccine. There is only one of my children who is my youngest, 17, who has not been entitled to get it yet but she would and I would encourage her to get it if 17 year olds were allowed to get the vaccine – with this Delta and Delta Plus variant on the warpath I think we should take what we can and be as safe as we can.

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