The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) has welcomed the Government’s announcement that Australia will receive another 4 million Pfizer vaccine doses this month in a swap deal with the UK.
It comes after the Government announced a similar arrangement with Singapore on Tuesday for Australia to received 500,000 Pfizer vaccines.
The swap deals are designed to bring forward Australia’s supply to speed up the vaccine rollout at a critical time, with 60% of Australia’s population living under lockdown.
RACGP President Dr Karen Price welcomed the announcement.
“This is very good news. We urgently need to vaccinate as many people as possible as quickly as we can to protect our community, and for us to see the restrictions that much of the country is living under begin to ease,” she said.
“General practice remains the backbone of the nation’s vaccine rollout. We know supply has long been the issue, and many patients who want to get the jab haven’t been able to yet.
“This deal will help to get more jabs in arms and fast track the rollout at a very critical time, with many communities struggling as they face the third wave of the virus.
Dr Price thanks general practices for their hard work in vaccine rollout.
“GPs across the country have been going above and beyond to get jabs in arms. This is an enormous effort, and I know there have been many long hours and stressful times.
“The vaccine rollout has not been without challenges, but GPs, practice managers, receptionists and other practice staff have risen to the occasion every time and got on with their job – for this I want to say thank you, keep up the great work.
“More practices are coming on board to deliver Pfizer vaccines, this together with the extra doses coming to our shores gives me confidence that the rollout will really gain momentum.
“My message to anyone eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine who hasn’t yet booked in is simple: do it as soon as you can. It’s not just about protecting yourself, it’s about protecting your loves ones and community, particularly those who are more vulnerable.”