The primary healthcare sector has welcomed the federal government's decision to allow pharmacies across Tasmania to administer all three COVID-19 vaccine booster shots.
Federal Health and Aged Care Minister Greg Hunt announced the changes as part of the COVID-19 booster vaccination rollout on November 8.
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The decision to holistically include pharmacies in the vaccine program meant more primary care sites around the state would be able to offer all three of the vaccines approved for use in Australia.
Mr Hunt said the decision would increase choice and make it easier for families to be vaccinated at the same time, and confirmed 151 million doses across the three vaccines, Pfizer, Novavax and Moderna had been secured for national distribution.
"Australia is well prepared to provide booster doses as approvals are provided by the medical experts," he said.
After a slow start to the vaccine rollout, Pharmacy Guild of Australia Tasmanian branch president, Helen O'Byrne welcomed the decision, and said pharmacies had already started receiving enquiries after the announcement was made.
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She said with pharmacists previously precluded from offering the Pfizer vaccines, the amendment to the booster rollout would eliminate any confusion about where the public could be vaccinated.
"Regardless of where someone received their original COVID-19 vaccinations, whether that was through a state clinic, or from a general practitioner, they are able to receive their booster at any participating community pharmacy," she said.
Mr Hunt said since November 7 over 173,000 boosters had already been administered nationally.
Ms O'Byrne encouraged everyone who was eligible for a vaccine to book in for a booster shot as soon as possible.
"If you haven't yet been vaccinated please do it now," she said. "It really is your best defence against serious and deadly illness from this virus."
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