IT’S been a pretty interesting week.

While we’d like to have more focus on the South Gippsland Shire Council election, where voting is due to start this week, there have been a few distractions.

There’s been a rise in the number of COVID-positive cases across Gippsland, including in South Gippsland and Bass Coast, where authorities tell us they have the situation under control.

We had a COVID-positive person present at the Wonthaggi Hospital, but staff handled the risk expertly and will now redouble their efforts this week by opening a separate “hot” receival area for outpatients who present with COVID symptoms.

We had local federal MP Russell Broadbent refusing to get vaccinated.

We had the state government declaring that people could lose their jobs, even temporarily, if they don’t get vaccinated.

And finally, last Friday, we had up to 200 people march against mandatory vaccination, in favour of the right to choose, in Wonthaggi.

So, what do we really know about the various vaccinations on offer? Most of us aren’t immunologists, so we’re taking it on trust, the same as we take on trust other medicines and treatments that are prescribed to us by doctors.

But perhaps we just need to simplify the problem.

The vast majority of Australians have already voted by rolling up their sleeves; pushing up towards 95 per cent first dose (12 and over) in the ACT and other states likely to follow.

The people have spoken.

They want to protect themselves and their loved ones. The government wants to prevent the health system from being overrun, not just by COVID patients, but also by the others who present: the stroke victims, heart and kidney patients, cancer and all the rest. And business just wants to open.

So, like it or not folks, it’s time to get with the program and get vaccinated.