Bendigo Health will receive its first doses of the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine from next week, a Department of Health spokesperson has confirmed.
The Pfizer vaccine, which arrived in Australia last Monday, is set to be shipped to Victoria and rolled out for high-risk priority people at nine suburban and regional heath services, including Bendigo Health.
As part of the phase 1a vaccination plan, some of Bendigo's frontline healthcare workers, aged care and disability care staff and residents will receive a single dose of the two dose vaccine.
"Our priority is to make sure the Commonwealth's vaccine rollout will be administered to these priority groups in Victoria as quickly and safely as possible," the spokesperson said.
The Federal Government has advised Victoria that it can expect to receive about 11,000 doses of the vaccine per week, although this will be dependent on supply.
The Pfizer vaccine requires two doses, 21 days apart.
The state will be responsible for the immunisation of its healthcare staff and public aged care sector patients and staff, while the Commonwealth is in charge of providing the vaccine for private sector aged care and disability care staff and residents.
Quarantine and border works are also part of the phase 1a vaccination plan.
The first 142,000 doses of the Pfizer vaccine landed in Australia just after noon last Monday, but not all doses will make it into arms next week.
The government will keep behind 62,000 doses to ensure they are available for second doses, in case there are any issues with supply in the coming weeks.
Health Minister Greg Hunt said of the 80,000 doses to be available next week, 60 per cent would be given to the states and territories.
"That means they will be able to begin with the priority for hotel quarantine, they will also be focusing on other related workers, those that are most likely to come into contact with positive international arrivals," Mr Hunt said.
"That has been recognised by the states and territories, and we agree with this, as the greatest risk of bringing the disease into the country."
The remaining 30,000 doses will go to aged care facilities, a rollout managed by the federal government.
On Tuesday, the Therapeutic Goods Administration provisionally approved the use of a second vaccine in Australia, paving the way for locally manufactured doses to be rolled out in early March.
The AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine will be added to the priority rollout of the Pfizer vaccine once approved, Mr Hunt said.
The TGA has given provisional approval of the doses for use in immunisation of adults 18 years and older.
Two doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine are required, with 12 weeks the recommended interval between the first and second dose.
If this is not possible due to imminent travel, cancer chemotherapy or major elective surgery, a minimum interval of four weeks can be used.
- with AAP
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