Western Australia’s COVID-19 vaccination program has got off to a strong start, with more than 2,800 frontline workers receiving their first dose of the Pfizer vaccine this week.
Vaccinations began within 24 hours of WA taking delivery of its first batch of vaccine.
A clinic set up at one of nine hotels being used to accommodate returning international travellers, administered the first jab to a quarantine nurse on Monday 22 February.
Vaccinations continued to be given at the hotel and other pop-up clinics established at Fremantle Port and Perth Airport, while on Friday, Perth Children’s Hospital – the central vaccine hub for WA – opened its doors for COVID vaccinations.
Fiona Stanley Hospital, Royal Perth Hospital and Bunbury Health Campus (the first regional centre to offer vaccinations) will start offering vaccinations from Tuesday.
Western Australia’s Chief Health Officer, Dr Andrew Robertson, welcomed the steady start to the rollout describing it as a significant turning point in the State’s response to COVID-19.
Dr Robertson said that despite the complex storage and handling requirements of the vaccine, the program had commenced without incident and with minimal wastage.
He expected the rollout to continue to gain momentum as supplies increased, clinics continued to open and processes were further refined.
“It is very reassuring to be in this position a year to the day WA recorded its second case of COVID-19.”
Individuals eligible for vaccination are invited to book their jabs via an online booking system which was developed especially for the vaccination rollout and is accessible 24 hours a day.
Dr Robertson said he was encouraged by the uptake among priority groups and hoped the level of support would continue as the vaccine became available to members of the broader population.
He said vaccination would help protect Western Australians from COVID-19.