The Australian Government Department of Health (Department of Health) has today issued a Disability Provider Alert. The text of their alert is below.
The Australian Government has announced a change in the COVID-19 vaccine rollout based on new on advice from the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI).
The Australian Government places safety above all else, as it has done throughout the pandemic, and will continue to follow the medical advice in protecting Australians. The Pfizer vaccine will now be available for people with disability, carers and workers aged between 18 and 50 years old, including people eligible under phase 1a and phase 1b of the vaccine rollout.
This will have an impact on the pace at which we can schedule vaccinations. People with disability who have already had the first dose of COVID-19 Vaccine AstraZeneca without any serious adverse effects can safely be given the second dose, including adults under 50 years.
The Government is reviewing the roll-out of the vaccine to people with disability and more information will be provided as soon as possible. The Department of Health appreciates the patience of people with disability, their families and cares, and providers during this time.
The Pfizer vaccine – Easy Read is available on the Department of Health website.
Updated ATAGI advice on AstraZeneca vaccine ATAGI recommends that the COVID-19 vaccine by Pfizer (Comirnaty) is preferred over COVID-19 Vaccine AstraZeneca in adults aged under 50 years. This recommendation is based on the increasing risk of severe outcomes from COVID-19 in older adults (and hence a higher benefit from vaccination) and a potentially increased risk of thrombosis with thrombocytopenia following AstraZeneca vaccine in those under 50 years.
COVID-19 Vaccine AstraZeneca can be used in adults aged under 50 years where the benefits are likely to outweigh the risks for that individual and the person has made an informed decision based on an understanding of the risks and benefits. The AstraZeneca vaccine – Easy Read on the Department of Health website will be updated shortly with the new advice. Additional AstraZeneca information is available in the new resources section below.
For more information
ATAGI statement on AstraZeneca vaccine in response to new vaccine safety concerns
Department of Health Secretary and Chief Medical Officer statement about the AstraZeneca vaccine advice from ATAGI
National coronavirus and COVID-19 vaccine helpline
If you need information about COVID-19 or COVID-19 call 1800 020 080 or email COVID-19 vaccine enquiries.