The Western NSW Primary Health Network (WNSW PHN) is advising the public that Phase 1b of the Commonwealth Government’s COVID-19 Vaccination Rollout commences in the region this coming Monday, March 22, 2021.
Selected clinics across the local region will be involved in the rollout of Phase 1b of the COVID-19 Vaccinations from March 22nd. Up to 13 practices will be involved during the 1st week of Phase 1b. Approximately the same number of additional practices will be included in the rollout of Phase 1b vaccinations during each of the subsequent 3 weeks until each of the 56 confirmed practices across our region are involved.
As has been advised by the Department of Health there is currently limited stock of imported vaccine. Towards the end of this month, CSL will be manufacturing significant volumes each week. Until then, GPs will be provided with limited stocks and will receive deliveries weekly. GPs will only be able to provide limited appointments based on stock on-hand. We ask that the public be patient, and over the coming weeks, vaccine stock will increase, as will the number of GPs receiving vaccine.
Residents of the region can rest assured that as more practices become involved during the first 4 weeks of Phase 1b, that there will be ample opportunity for everyone eligible in the Phase to be vaccinated in a timely manner.
Residents eligible for vaccination during Phase 1b are encouraged to talk to their usual General Practice to enquire as to that practice’s inclusion in the rollout of COVID-19 vaccinations, and what to do if required to attend another General Practice.
Those without a usual GP will be able to access vaccination services at one of the region’s COVID-19 Respiratory Clinics that will be part of the vaccination rollout. Most of the region’s existing Respiratory Clinics will be involved in Phase 1b COVID-19 Vaccinations from March 22, including Bathurst, Broken Hill (Maari Ma and Royal Flying Doctor Service), Cobar, Cowra, Mudgee, Orange, and Walgett.
General Practice Clinics involved from week 1 of the COVID-19 Phase 1b Rollout include:
- Loxley House Family Practice
- Westpoint Medical Practice
- Kelso Medical Centre
Broken Hill: South Medical Centre
Coonabarabran: Coonabarabran Area Medical Centre
Cowra: Medispring Family Medical Centre
Dubbo: Dubbo Family Doctors
- Forbes Medical Centre
- Forbes Medicine and Mind
Grenfell: Main Street Medical Service
- Colour City Medical Practice
- The Wellness House
Parkes: Currajong Street Medical Centre
The following groups of people are eligible to receive their COVID-19 vaccinations as part of the Phase 1b Vaccination Rollout:
- People aged 70 years and over.
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 55 years and over.
- Health Care Workers not vaccinated during Phase 1a.
- People aged 18 years and over with specified underlying medical conditions.
- Critical and high-risk workers.
People with an underlying medical condition whose practice is not involved during the 4-week rollout of Phase 1b are encouraged to see their regular GP for an up to date, printed personal health summary or confirmation letter before booking for their vaccine with another practice.
WNSW PHN Acting CEO, Robert Strickland, has praised the clinics that will be involved during Phase 1b of Vaccinations.
“We’re extremely grateful that so many of the region’s General Practices have chosen to be part of this absolutely vital stage in our region’s response to COVID-19.”
Mr Strickland added, “We’re also truly indebted to the region’s Respiratory Clinics that have been integral in providing testing services for people across the region, and the work of these clinics will continue to be extremely important as many of them begin to provide vaccination services as well.”
Dr Ai-Vee Chua, General Practitioner and Rural Clinical Lead for NSW Health’s COVID-19 Primary Care Community of Practice, reminds people to not panic about booking in for their COVID-19 vaccinations.
“The Pfizer and AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective and have passed the rigorous TGA approval processes to be made available in Australia. It will be a good thing for our vulnerable populations to have their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccination sometime in the next few months.”
Dr Chua added, “We are in the fortunate position of having had no community transmission in NSW since mid-January, NSW has very robust contact tracing systems in place, and there is no rush to have your vaccine next week. There are very limited amounts of vaccine available to General Practices right now, but supply of vaccines will increase as Australian production of the AstraZeneca vaccine ramps up in the upcoming weeks, allowing more and more GP Practices to be permitted to come on board as vaccination sites. People who are eligible to receive the vaccine will eventually do so over the course of this year.”
Residents can check which phase of the Commonwealth Government’s COVID-19 Vaccination Rollout they will be eligible for via https://covid-vaccine.healthdirect.gov.au/eligibility.