THE Gippsland Region Public Health Unit has advised this week that appointments are now available in Gippsland for young people aged 12-15 years in a priority cohort for the Pfizer vaccine and the general public aged 18–39 years for the AstraZeneca vaccine.
“While the GRPHU’s Community Vaccination Hubs are not officially part of the Department of Health’s initial trial for these extended age groups, our clinics have capacity to support any interest from these new cohorts for each vaccine,” said a GRPHU spokesperson.
“Appointments must be made for each vaccine, no walk-ins will be accepted and we ask the community to be patient as the clinics respond to these updated eligible age groups.
“Young people aged 12-15 years who are at higher risk of severe illness if they contract COVID-19 are also eligible to receive the Pfizer vaccine with parent consent.
This eligibility applies to: 12-15 year olds with specified medical conditions that increase their risk of severe COVID-19 (including but not limited to asthma, diabetes, obesity, cardiac and circulatory congenital
anomalies, neuro developmental disorders, epilepsy, immuno-compromised and trisomy 21), Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people, Young people in remote communities, as part of broader community outreach vaccination programs that provide vaccines for all ages.”
Eligible young people will be given a two-dose schedule, with the normal minimum interval of six weeks between doses.
Young people will be encouraged to speak to their general practitioner about any questions they (or their parents/guardians) have about vaccination.
Vaccination bookings for this cohort should be made through the normal booking process (online at https://www.coronavirus.vic.gov.au/book-your-vaccine-appointment or by calling 1800 675 398).
They must attend a vaccination centre with a parent or guardian or other person with parental responsibility for the child who will give consent and accompany them during the vaccination process.
As well as meeting the usual eligibility requirements as a person with an underlying medical condition or Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander person, proof of age must also be provided to ensure the young person is at least 12 years old. For example, a school ID card, birth certificate, passport, doctor’s letter with date of birth or other proof of age.