Thu, 21/01/2021 | News

Update on Australia’s COVID-19 vaccines

Information provided by The Australian Government Department of Health

The Australian Government has a strategy to deliver COVID-19 vaccines to everyone living in Australia as soon as they are available.

A staged rollout of the vaccine is expected to commence in February 2021.

Healthcare professionals have an important role in discussing and delivering vaccination against COVID-19 with their patients.

The Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is likely to be available from early mid-February this year. Doses of this vaccine will be available through 30 to 50 hubs at specific hospital sites across urban and rural Australia.

Approval of the University of Oxford/AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine is anticipated for the coming months.

Both vaccines will progressively be distributed through an expanded number of sites, including general practice clinics, existing Commonwealth GP respiratory clinics, state-run vaccination clinics and pharmacies.

The vaccine rollout roadmap has determined the phases of vaccination for priority groups. They are:

Phase 1a

  • Quarantine and border workers
  • Frontline at-risk health care workers
  • Residential aged care and disability care staff
  • Residential aged care and disability care residents.

Phase 1b

  • Adults over 70 years
  • All other health care workers
  • Begin vaccinating Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people
  • Younger adults with an underlying medical condition, including those with a disability
  • Critical and high risk workers including defence, police, fire, emergency services and meat processing.

Phase 2a

  • Adults over 50 years
  • Continue vaccinating Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people
  • Other critical and high risk workers.

Phase 2b

  • Balance of adult population
  • Catch up any unvaccinated Australians from previous phases.

Phase 3

  • People under 18 years if recommended.

Frontline healthcare workers in phase 1a are those at the greatest risk of exposure to COVID-19.This includes:

  • GP Respiratory Clinics
  • COVID-19 testing facilities
  • ambulance staff
  • paramedics
  • ICU staff
  • emergency department staff
  • clinical and ancillary support staff.

Other healthcare workers, including GPs, will be included for vaccination for phase 1b, as soon as additional doses are available.

The Department of Health is committed to providing you timely information as it becomes available. Learn more at the Department of Health’s COVID-19 vaccines website and subscribe to the COVID-19 Vaccines Update.

Visit our COVID-19 vaccination program page here