Following the release of the latest national vaccination data, nearly 70% of Coffs Harbour LGA residents have rolled up their sleeves to get vaccinated. 67.4% of eligible people have had their first dose, and 37.4% of eligible people are fully vaccinated.
At current rates, we will be approaching 75% first dose by mid next week.However, vaccination rates in the Coffs Harbour LGA are behind other LGAs in our area and are about 10% behind Port Macquarie-Hastings LGA.
The COVID vaccine rollout is coordinated by the Federal Government through the Primary Health Network (PHN). They have been working with GP clinics and through their network have rolled out the majority of the jabs in our region.
The greatest frustration with the vaccine rollout has been the unfair characterisation of the AstraZeneca vaccine as somehow inferior to the others.
This vaccine was developed by one of the most prestigious universities in the world – Oxford University in the UK – and is being sold at cost price by the manufacturer for the duration of the pandemic. There is a very small percentage of the population that needs to take an alternative vaccine – anyone concerned should seek medical advice – but it is an otherwise very safe and effective vaccine against COVID-19.
“The number of Coffs Coast GP clinics who are offering Pfizer vaccines will go from 8 to 15 this week, and they should begin offering appointments shortly. I do acknowledge the booking system that has been chosen is not ideal”, Coffs Harbour MLC, Gurmesh Singh said.
“I’m working with my Federal colleagues to try to make this a smoother process.If you are one of the people who needs a Pfizer appointment, you need to book through the eligibility checker, or contact the GP clinics directly”.
Moderna shipments will begin to arrive shortly as well and will be administered through community pharmacies.
“I want to thank those in Coffs Harbour who have rolled up their sleeves and done their civic duty. The vaccine is not only about protecting yourself, it’s about protecting your family, your community, and the health professionals who put their own health at risk to treat COVID patients”.
If anyone is undecided or hesitant about the vaccines, ask yourself this question – if you broke your leg, would you pull out your phone and see what Facebook thinks about it, or would you see a doctor?
Singh said; “you can not trust social media for medical advice – please talk to a doctor. Vaccines save lives. I know people have talked a lot recently about their rights, but with rights there are also responsibilities. We all have a responsibility to protect our vulnerable, particularly the children who can not get vaccinated for COVID-19. We have a responsibility to our health care professionals to not risk their health and to not burden our health care system. We all have the power to look after our community, no one wants to get a vaccination for the sake of it, we are getting a vaccination for our health, our families, our neighbours, friends and community.”
The above is a 14 September media release from the office of Gurmesh Singh, MLC for Coffs Harbour