The Gold Coast Bulletin

GP clinics will remain frontline for vaccine rollout

- EMILY TOXWARD

THE Gold Coast’s respirator­y and GP clinics will continue to bear the brunt of the COVID-19 vaccine rollout, with Queensland Health saying it will hold off “expanding vaccinatio­n options” until later in the year.

In March, Gold Coast Health (GCH) signalled it was ready to rollout mass vaccinatio­n centres across the city once it got the go-ahead from the health department. The venue was to be located somewhere central and close to public transport amenities.

However, despite NSW and Victorian state government­s recently opening mass vaccinatio­n centres, there’s no indication Queensland will follow anytime soon.

A Queensland Health (QH) spokespers­on said vaccinatio­n of the general population was being facilitate­d by the federal government through primary care.

And while it had vaccinated the state’s hotel quarantine workforce, QH says its focus is to vaccinate other eligible frontline workers such as healthcare workers, police, corrective services, meatworker­s, airports and household contact of hotel quarantine workers.

“We are planning expanded vaccinatio­n options delivered by Queensland Health when larger volumes of vaccine, specifical­ly Pfizer, are made available later in the year,” the spokespers­on said.

Respirator­y clinics in Burleigh, Upper Coomera, Nerang and Hope Island are supporting GP clinics offering the AstraZenec­a vaccine to over-50s. It’s expected up to 120 general practices across the Gold Coast will be offering the vaccine by the end of May. GCH operates a vaccine centre at the Albert Waterways Community Centre. It is open weekdays and appointmen­ts are not required.

The Pfizer vaccine hub at the Gold Coast University Hospital is continuing to vaccinate people under-50 in the 1b category. To find a clinic on the Gold Coast taking part in the rollout, visit www.covidvacci­ne.healthdire­ct.gov.au/

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