06 February 2021

First for COVID-19 vaccine and vaccination hubs in WA revealed

Quarantine and international border workers, high-risk frontline healthcare staff and staff and residents of aged and disability care facilities will be among the first Western Australians eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine expected to be available from the end of this month.

WA Department of Health Director General Dr David Russell-Weisz said that WA’s COVID-19 vaccination program - delivered in partnership with the Australian Government - would prioritise groups at increased risk of developing severe disease or those at higher risk of being exposed to infected people.

The Australian Government will deliver the vaccination program to aged and disability care residential facilities in WA.

“WA Health will deliver the vaccination program to key priority groups in the first phase including quarantine and international border workers, and at-risk frontline health care workers,” Dr Russell Weisz said.

“WA Health expects that limited vaccine doses will be available in the initial weeks of the rollout. As additional vaccine types become available in larger quantities, more sites will be made available to deliver the vaccine. Getting vaccinated will help protect you and your family against serious disease and safeguard our community.”

As supplies will be limited, those in the highest priority groups will be eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine in the first phase of the program and the first available vaccines in WA will be allocated according to risk.

Those anticipated to be offered the state administered vaccine pending vaccine quantities and supply, to be confirmed by the Australian Government include:

  • Quarantine hotel workers, including hotel staff, police, security and medical support
  • International airport workers with face to face contact with travellers
  • Security and clinical staff at the international airport
  • Transport staff involved in flight crew and quarantine hotel transfers
  • Defined staff at sea ports who board and spend time on vessels with crew
  • Identified emergency and ward staff of Fiona Stanley and Royal Perth Hospitals who receive and treat the bulk of international arrivals.

WA Health will be responsible for vaccinating quarantine and international border workers and at-risk frontline healthcare workers with vaccinations being delivered by the Child and Adolescent Health Service in the metropolitan area, and the WA Country Health Service in the regions.

Given the COVID-19 cases in WA associated with international travel, it was anticipated that clinical teams from the Perth Children’s Hospital (PCH) vaccination hub will vaccinate high risk staff at quarantine hotels and the international airport with the first available vaccines.

During the first phase and as more doses are received, the vaccine will be made available to healthcare and other at-risk workers via six vaccination hubs, located at PCH, Albany Health Campus, Hedland Health Campus, Kalgoorlie Health Campus, Geraldton Health Campus and Broome Health Campus.

It is expected that the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine will be the first available vaccine in WA with the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine offered in the coming months – subject to necessary Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) approvals.

Australia’s COVID-19 Vaccination Program will be rolled out in three phases, with other priority groups  – including the elderly, other healthcare workers, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, people with underlying medical conditions and critical/high-risk workers – offered vaccination later in phase 1 and in phase 2.

All phases of the program are scheduled to be complete by the end of the year.

WA Health was continuing to work with the Australian Government, Health Service Providers and other major government and non-government stakeholders to finalise logistics and the program start date.

In the first phase of the program, eligible individuals will be invited to register for a vaccine using a WA Health booking system.

Visit WA Health’s HealthyWA website for the latest information on COVID-19. 

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