COVID-19 vaccines

Information for COVID-19 vaccine providers in our region. 

Page last updated: 11:00am, 17 February 2021

Australia’s COVID-19 vaccine national roll-out strategy outlines sites and priority populations for initial vaccinations, and the phases in which vaccine doses will be made available.

How to stay up to date

The Australian Department of Health’s COVID-19 vaccine website hub contains information for general practices, GP-led Respiratory Clinics, Aboriginal and Community Controlled Health Services and community pharmacies. It includes information on:

We will communicate as much information about the roll-out as quickly as we can to general practices, pharmacies and other primary care providers in our region. You can read our latest e-bulletins on our website. If you’re not receiving these email updates, please subscribe or contact primarycare@nwmphn.org.au

We recommend also subscribing to the Australian Government’s COVID-19 vaccines newsletter to stay up to date.

Latest news

  • Webinar for vaccine providers available to watch on demand

    On Tuesday, 23 February 2021, North Western Melbourne and Eastern Melbourne PHNs hosted a webinar for COVID-19 vaccine providers in our regions.

    This webinar is available to watch on demand until Tuesday, 9 March 2021.

  • Aged care readiness toolkit now available

    17 February 2021

    The Australian Department of Health has published a readiness toolkit for residential aged care facilities to help prepare for the roll-out of COVID-19 vaccines and obtaining and recording consent for residents.

    A resource pack for residential aged care providers, workers, residents, carers and families relating to the COVID-19 vaccination roll-out is also available.

  • Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine provisionally approved

    16 February 2021

    The Therapeutic Goods Administration has granted provisional approval to AstraZeneca Pty Ltd for its COVID-19 vaccine.

    We have published a COVID-19 vaccine update for general practice. Please read it for more information on:

      • provisional approval of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine
      • the status of applications from general practices who wish to participate in phase 1b of the vaccine rollout
      • Pfizer hub distribution sites
      • vaccinations for aged care residents and workers
      • vaccine training
      • Medicare funding and more.
  • Update on the expression of interest process for general practices wishing to distribute COVID-19 vaccines

    16 February 2021

    The Australian Department of Health received 352 expressions of interest (EOI) from general practices in the North Western Melbourne Primary Health Network (NWMPHN) catchment applying to be part of phase 1b of the vaccine rollout. More than 5000 were received nationally.

    The Department of Health is currently in the process of assessing the EOI applications to identify general practices that can participate in the early stages of Phase 1b. Phase 1b is scheduled to begin in March 2021 (pending vaccine approval and availability).

    General practices will be on-boarded in a staggered approach, over a number of tranches, based on general practice preparedness, vaccine availability, geographical reach/spread and other logistical considerations.

    Accredited practices who did not submit an EOI are encouraged to please contact primarycare@nwmphn.org.au to discuss participation in future phases of the rollout.

    More information is available in the 12 February update from Deputy Chief Medical Officer Professor Michael Kidd AM.

  • Expressions of interest for community pharmacies wishing to distribute COVID-19 vaccines

    16 February 2021

    The EOI process for community pharmacies is being managed by the Pharmacy Programs Administrator (PPA) on behalf of the Department of Health. More information is available on the PPA website.

COVID-19 and influenza vaccines

  • ATAGI advice: avoid co-administration of the COVID-19 and influenza vaccines

    Routine scheduling and giving of an influenza vaccine with a COVID-19 vaccine on the same day is not recommended. The preferred minimum interval between vaccines is 14 days.

    More information is available from the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation. This advice will be updated as new information becomes available.

COVID-19 vaccination training

  • Mandatory training for authorised immunisation providers

    16 February 2021

    National COVID-19 vaccine training modules for clinical and non-clinical staff involved in the administration of COVID-19 vaccines is now available on the Australian Department of Health website. Authorised immunisation providers must complete this training before administering COVID-19 vaccinations.

    The training is being provided free to all authorised COVID-19 vaccination providers. The first modules are targeting health professionals in hospitals who will be administering the Pfizer vaccine.

    Authorised immunisation providers in our region can complete the training now. However, they will be required to update their training once modules for the Oxford University/AstraZeneca, Novavax and potentially other vaccines are added.

    Supporting non-clinical and administrative workers are also required to complete this training. However, people in this group need only complete the three core non-clinical modules.

     

  • Training to assist mandatory reporting of vaccinations

    From 1 March 2021, all vaccine providers will be required to report influenza vaccinations to the Australian Immunisation Register (AIR). Reporting of all COVID-19 vaccinations will be mandatory once vaccinations begin in Australia. All other National Immunisation Program vaccinations must be reported on from 1 July 2021.

    This fact sheet provides information and advice about the importance of data quality when recording and transmitting vaccination encounters in practice software and on the Australian Immunisation Register.

    This Services Australia user guide provides more information on accessing AIR using Provider Digital Access (PRODA).

    Training

    Services Australia provides free AIR online training modules.

  • Other training recommended for practice teams

    The World Health Organization has developed a free, three-hour online training package: COVID-19 vaccination training for health workers. The package, developed in collaboration with UNICEF, consists of six modules, which include video lectures, quizzes, job aids, interactive exercises and downloadable presentations with the available information.

    The Australasian Society of Clinical Immunology and Allergy provides free online anaphylaxis training for health professionals.