Residents in Cairns and Far North Queensland will be amongst the first in Australia to receive a COVID-19 vaccination.
As part of the Australian Government’s COVID-19 Vaccination Program, people in priority groups who are most at risk and who need protection the most – will receive a vaccine first.
Cairns Hospital will go live next week as one of three Queensland Pfizer vaccination hubs, and one of 16 across the nation.
Frontline healthcare workers and quarantine and border workers will receive the vaccine through the dedicated Pfizer hubs run by states and territories.
In addition, a Commonwealth led vaccination workforce will ensure residential aged care and disability care residents and staff receive their vaccines.
Federal Leichhardt MP Warren Entsch said the staged approach to the rollout would ensure those who need the most protection get it first.
“Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the Australian Government has worked diligently to ensure our nation has access to safe and effective vaccines,” Mr Entsch said.
“From next week, some of our most essential workers and vulnerable Australians in Cairns and Far North Queensland will be vaccinated, with more of our community to follow in the coming weeks and months.”
“The initial priority groups will include aged care and disability care residents and workers, frontline healthcare workers, and quarantine and border workers.”
“The rollout will begin with the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine and the AstraZeneca/Oxford vaccine from early March.”
Federal Health and Aged Care Minister Greg Hunt reaffirmed that Australia’s vaccine strategy is strong and on schedule.
“Australia will begin rolling out the COVID-19 Vaccination program from next week,” Mr Hunt said.
“This week the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine has arrived in the country and the TGA has approved the AstraZeneca/Oxford vaccine.
“These are two outstanding vaccines that will be available to people in Australia free of charge.
“Our frontline border and quarantine workers, and people living and working in residential aged and disability care facilities will be the first to receive their vaccines.
“The vaccination program will save and protect lives. Both of our vaccines will prevent serious illness. That is our primary goal.”
Vaccines will be available across additional settings including GP clinic and community pharmacy.
The staged rollout of COVID-19 vaccines is guided by Australia’s COVID-19 Vaccine National Rollout Strategy.
Find out more about the rollout and priority groups at: www.aus.gov.au