Australia news live: Victoria records three new Covid cases; PM refuses to give in to Facebook news ban
Victoria’s health minister, Martin Foley, has announced the first doses of the Pfizer vaccine will be delivered to frontline workers at three hospitals commencing next week, AAP reports.
Foley announced Austin Health, Monash Health and Western Health will be the first to deliver doses of the vaccine from Monday.
He said hotel quarantine workers, airport and port workers, high-risk frontline health staff and aged care staff and residents will be first in line for the jab.
“Our priority is to support the commonwealth to make sure that the vaccine is administered to workers at the highest risk of contracting Covid-19 as quickly and safely possible,” Foley said in a statement on Friday.
“Whether they work in hotel quarantine, at the airport or a specialist Covid ward – we need to keep Victorians most at risk of infection safe, while they continue to keep Victorians safe.”
The vaccine will be administered at dedicated hospital facilities, in hotel quarantine settings, at Melbourne airport and through mobile outreach teams.
The federal government has allocated 12,000 doses of the Pfizer vaccine to Victoria in the first week of the program.
About 59,000 doses are expected in the first four weeks.
Two doses of the Pzifer vaccine are required at least three weeks apart and it must be stored and transported at -70C.
Rhonda Stuart from Monash Health told reporters earlier this month the hospital had two freezers “ready and waiting” to store up to 180,000 doses.
Six other hospitals will also become vaccination hubs as more doses become available. They are Albury-Wodonga Health, Ballarat Health, Barwon Health, Bendigo Health, Goulburn Valley Health and Latrobe Health.
Foley said the Barwon Health hub will begin its public sector residential aged care program next week, “trialling an outreach model to be implemented across regional Victoria”.
Barwon Health will also vaccinate port of entry workers in Portland, in the state’s south-west.