Timeline target slips


NATIONWIDE Covid-19 vaccination targets have been ditched “given the many uncertainties involved”. Full story inside.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced on Sunday that while 1.16 million vaccine doses had already been administered around the country, the Government “has not set, nor has any plans to set any new targets for completing first doses”.
A sluggish start to the rollout had already put previously announced targets out of reach, including the goal to offer every eligible Australian an initial jab by the end of October.
More adjustments then became necessary last week in the wake of concerns about the risk of rare blood clot complications, with health authorities updating their advice around the AstraZeneca vaccine and recommending it be administered only to those aged over 50, and leaving Pfizer as the ‘preferred vaccine’ for the younger age group.
The changes came just days after NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian announced a State Government plan to open a mass vaccination hub able to deliver about 30,000 doses a week at Sydney Olympic Park from May.
She said another 30,000 jabs a week could be administered across about 100 existing clinics around the State, including those run by GPs, but stressed those targets were dependent on being able to source enough doses through the Commonwealth.
A NSW Health spokesperson said bookings would be required for the Olympic Park mass hub, with initial appointments only “available to those such as any remaining frontline health staff requiring vaccination and critical and high-risk workers and their families”.
However, NSW Health will also identify and invite people in vulnerable groups to make a booking, including those who have no regular GP or who are identified via NSW Health integrated care programs, such as those with chronic diseases.