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The head of the federal government’s COVID-19 vaccination task force, Lt. Gen. John Frewen, says workplace vaccinations could be an option later this year, but supplies of the Pfizer vaccine remain limited for now.
Speaking to the media in a press conference in Canberra this afternoon, Lieutenant General Frewen said: “Business and industry are keen to take an active part in the rollout and many of them have already done things in this area.”
Lieutenant General John Frewen.Recognition:Alex Ellinghausen
“Many of these industries already have annual flu vaccinations. I think their ability to have vaccinations in the workplace has some advantages when it comes to COVID as well, ”he said.
He said he will be in touch with Federal Treasurer Josh Frydenberg and industry leaders tomorrow and “I look forward to having similar conversations with them to see how the industry can now be included in our plan”.
“Tomorrow we hope to … have a national discussion about where we see the industry for future rollout.”
Lt. Gen. Frewen said, “The main limiter right now would be vaccine availability. I think right now we’re going to … give Pfizer vaccines priority to states and territories like we do. Around September and October, when we have better access to vaccines, vaccinations in the workplace can open up. “
He said delivery issues meant Pfizer was prioritized for certain age groups and “we are offering a choice to those under 40. If they want to use AstraZeneca now, they can do so with informed consent”.
“If we have supplies of both, [can] offer the individual the choice. “