From tomorrow, Wednesday, August 25, everyone aged 16 years and over is eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccine. Everyone aged 16 – 59 years is now eligible for a Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine.

The AstraZeneca is available for everyone aged over 60 years. There is no eligibility criteria for this group other than age.

Young people aged 12 -15 years are eligible for a Pfizer vaccine if they have;

– an underlying medical condition

– are Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander.

Existing exemptions for priority cohorts to receive the COVID-19 vaccine remain.

According to the Gippsland Region Public Health Unit, this is welcome news that simplifies the eligibility criteria for either vaccine and demonstrates the State Government’s commitment to ensuring everyone has the opportunity to get vaccinated.

“It is important to stress that all appointments for the Pfizer vaccine need to be booked at any one of our community vaccination clinics by calling the Coronavirus Hotline on 1800 675 398 or online.”

Make an appointment online at: https://www.coronavirus.vic.gov.au/book-your-vaccine-appointment.

“We ask the community to please be patient in planning for and making their vaccination booking,” said a spokesman for GRPHU.

“Staff at our community vaccination clinics are committed to supporting people to get vaccinated.

“The community’s cooperation and kindness is very much appreciated. We are constantly reviewing our ability to increase capacity at all of our community vaccination clinics.

“People aged 18-39 years who have already booked for their first vaccine dose at our vaccination clinics will be offered the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine. They do not need to rebook or change their existing vaccine appointment.

“People who have already had a first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine will be offered a second dose of the same vaccine brand.

“Eligible adults aged 18-59 years can choose to receive the AstraZeneca vaccine at a community vaccination clinic, or participating doctor’s clinics and pharmacies, respiratory clinics and community health centres.

“The COVID-19 vaccines are free, safe and voluntary. The more people who are vaccinated, the greater the protection for those vaccinated and the whole community.”