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October, 3

COVID vaccines will be available at more than 100 Commonwealth clinics that ‘will take all comers’, Greg Hunt says

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Bookings are now underway for over 70s and others in high-risk groups to receive their COVID-19 vaccines, and most will be done through traditional GP clinics.

But the government is also opening more than 100 clinics that will be capable of delivering an average of 1,000 vaccinations each, per week.

The extra clinics will ease pressure on GPs and give more options to people who do not have access to Medicare.

COVID vaccines aren’t just available from GPs

The federal government has released a list of more than 1,000 GP clinics that are available to administer COVID-19 vaccinations in phase 1B — even if the list caught some practices by surprise.

But the list also includes more than 100 Commonwealth clinics, which were set up in the weeks and months after COVID-19 became a pandemic.

A needle balanced on a vial of the AstraZeneca vaccine
Phase 1B of the vaccine rollout accounts for millions of doses.(Reuters: Dado Ruvic)

They’re formally known as Commonwealth GP-led respiratory clinics, and they’ve been operating as local go-to spots for people with COVID-19 symptoms.

“[The] clinics, which were initially set up to do COVID-19 testing, and are now pivoting to roll out the vaccines in communities right across the country,” deputy Chief Medical Officer Michael Kidd said.

According to Health Minister Greg Hunt, the clinics will be allotted with up to 2,000 doses per week, with an average of 1,000 vaccine doses each.

Can I book now?

Hold off for a few more hours yet.

The list of clinics was first released alongside a list of participating GPs on Wednesday, but the commonwealth vaccination clinics will not begin accepting bookings until Friday March 19.

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