With all Australians over the age of 50 now eligible for an AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine, staff at Ochre Health Medical Centre are hoping to see a boost in people stepping up to receive their first shot.
As of Monday, AstraZeneca shots became available to persons over 50 at all mass vaccination centres and general practice respiratory clinics, including Ochre Heath's Bathurst respiratory clinic at Charles Sturt University [CSU].
Ochre Health Medical Centre Bathurst practice manager Samantha Allen said the respiratory clinic has plenty of availabilities for people wishing to get vaccinated.
"We've had about 1000 people receive vaccinations so far, and the number is growing day-by-day," Ms Allen said.
"It's been a bit of a slow start, but we expect to see a rise in vaccinations now that more people are eligible."
Ms Allen said there's always a GP on site at the respiratory clinic for patients wishing to learn more about the vaccine.
"Whenever patients have questions or concerns around the vaccine, we always put them through to the GP prior to receiving the vaccine," she said.
"We also strongly encourage patients to meet with their regular GP first if they feel more comfortable doing so."
Ochre Health Medical Centre is currently only administering the AstraZeneca vaccine, with no word yet from the federal government on when the Pfizer/BioNtech vaccine will be made available for general practices.
The Pfizer/BioNtech vaccine is currently limited to aged care and disability care residents and staff, as well as frontline health care workers, quarantine and border staff, and will be prioritised for people under the age of 50 across all phases.
Ms Allen said the centre's main clinic has also commenced their annual flu vaccination rollout, with members of the community strongly urged to book appointments as soon as possible.
"We recommend patients leave at least a two weeks between receiving the COVID-19 vaccine and flu vaccine to avoid any serious side effects," she said.
"If there's any doubts patients may have, we'd like to reaffirm our recommendation to book a GP appointment for more information."
For more information or to book an appointment, visit ochrehealth.com.au.
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