Jabs to be opened up to under-40s as Scott Morrison seeks to escalate nation’s slow rollout in midst of fresh Covid outbreak
- Cabinet’s national security committee met Monday to discuss Covid outbreaks
- Several states have imposed restrictions as clusters emerge across the nation
- Scott Morrison has announced vaccines will be mandatory for aged care workers
- Decision comes as Covid outbreaks reignite calls for vaccinations to increase
- Mr Morrison also confirmed those under 40 could have the AstraZeneca jab
- This is despite earlier advice that the vaccine should not be given to under 60s
PUBLISHED: 18:48 AEST, 28 June 2021 | UPDATED: 21:50 AEST, 28 June 2021
Vaccination of aged care workers and everyone in the hotel quarantine system is to be made mandatory under a move endorsed by the national cabinet, Scott Morrison has announced.
In a change of policy to help the fledging rollout, Mr Morrison also confirmed anyone under 60 can now get the AstraZeneca jab if they want to, despite earlier advice that younger people should get another jab.
The decisions come as Australia’s growing coronavirus outbreaks have reignited calls for vaccinations to be increased amid concern about the highly contagious Indian Delta strain sweeping across Sydney.Dailymail.co.uk: News, Sport, Showbiz, Celebrities from Daily MailPauseNext video0:35 / 1:56SettingsFull-screenRead More
Cabinet’s national security committee met on Monday to discuss the unfolding situation with lockdowns and tighter restrictions emerging around the nation. Covid-19 vaccinations will be mandatory for health care workers
The prime minister said the mandatory vaccines would apply to anyone who worked, either directly or indirectly, in hotel quarantine – including drivers.
- The decision comes as outbreaks have reignited calls for vaccinations to be increased Pictured: Staff are seen leaving Arcare Aged Care facility in Melbourne last month
Announcing the outcome of the emergency meeting on Monday night, the Prime Minister said the mandatory vaccines would apply to anyone who worked, either directly or indirectly, in hotel quarantine – including drivers.
Sydney’s outbreak, which has topped 130 cases, began when an unvaccinated limo driver transporting flight crew caught the virus and started unknowingly spreading it around Bondi.
Asked whether those under 40 could receive the AstraZeneca jab, as the nation waits for shipments of Pfizer, Mr Morrison said Australians could do so after seeking medical advice
‘If they are willing to go and speak to their doctor and have access to the AstraZeneca vaccine, they can do so. So the answer is yes, they can go and do that,’ he said.
Mr Morrison said national cabinet has agreed on an indemnity scheme for GPs to give the AstraZeneca vaccine to Australians under the age of 60 who are willing to accept the extremely rare blood clot risk.
Indemnity schemes offer insurance cover to professionals and business owners in the event of an adverse incident caused by the practitioner’s misjudgement.
- Prime Minister Scott Morrison (pictured) has announced vaccinations will be made mandatory for aged care workers+9
Cabinet’s national security committee met on Monday for emergency discussions as Covid outbreaks have popped up across several states. Pictured: Health workers conduct COVID-19 tests at the St. Vincents Hospital drive-through testing clinic at Bondi Beach on Saturday
‘If you wish to get the AstraZeneca vaccine, then we would encourage you to go and have that discussion with your GP, and we’ve already made announcements to support those additional consultations with the GPs so you can have that conversation,’ he said.
‘And secondly, we are also providing the indemnity scheme for those general practitioners, so they can actively engage with you, and you can make the best decision for your health.’
In May, the federal government announced the Pfizer vaccine was the recommended shot for people under 50 after AstraZeneca was linked to rare blood-clotting condition thrombosis with thrombocytopenia syndrome (TTS), which has caused two deaths in Australia.
KEY POINTS FROM EMERGENCY NATIONAL CABINET
- Scott Morrison revealed that quarantine workers, including those only indirectly working in the program, now have to be vaccinated
- The same applies to aged care workers, who will need to have at least one dose by mid-September this year
- Travellers in hotel quarantine must also do an additional Covid test 2-3 days after they finish the 14 day isolation
- ‘Two to three days after having left that quarantine facility, get a test. We will be requiring it. We seek your cooperation,’ he said.
- The Commonwealth also signed off an $11million grant program to help related facilities get staff vaccinated
- A No Fault indemnity scheme has been put in place for GPs to give AstraZeneca to anyone under 60 who is willing and accepts the very rare risk of blood clots
Earlier this month, the minimum age for the Oxford University jab was increased from 50 to 60 after fears grew that more could develop the ultra-rare blood clots.
Mr Morrison also said cabinet had the ‘opportunity to assess the outbreaks in five separate jurisdictions’.
‘It has been a busy evening in the midst of what is a very serious situation that we are confronting but as always, we are doing it together,’ he said.
Despite aged care workers and residents being in the initial Phase 1a rollout, many are still not vaccinated.
Of the 910 deaths in Australia from COVID-19, 685 have been aged care residents.
There will also be a ban on accommodating low-risk domestic travellers next door to high-risk international arrivals, which triggered an outbreak in Queensland.
- Acting Victorian Premier James Merlino receives his second Pfizer Covid-19 vaccination at the Royal Exhibition Building on Saturday
This could be done by separating them into different accommodation or floors in the one facility, like is already done in the Northern Territory which has different sections of accommodation depending on the risk-level of the traveller.
The meeting received a detailed briefing on the vaccination program from three top officials – Covid-19 task force commander John Frewen, health department boss Brendan Murphy and Chief Medical Officer Paul Kelly.
Earlier, Lieutenant General Frewen told reporters while Pfizer supplies remained constrained, there were ample AstraZeneca doses for people over 60.
He warned the disease would not be eradicated in the near future.
‘We will have to get more comfortable with the idea that there will be ongoing outbreaks in the COVID space,’ he said.
‘But with all of those mitigation measures we can hopefully keep people alive, keep people from getting seriously ill and then as quickly as we can transition back to normal life as quickly as we can.
‘Vaccination underpins all of that.’
With Sydney in lockdown, NSW recorded 18 new coronavirus cases and all but one confirmed as linked to existing cases.+9
- Royal Prince Alfred Hospital at Camperdown in Sydney’s inner west had seen hundreds of people turn up to its vaccination centre on Monday (pictured)
The number was down from 30 on Sunday and came from 59,000 tests.
Queensland is on the verge of another lockdown in the state’s southeast after two new local cases with more than 160 returned mine workers being tested.
Masks will be mandatory across large swathes of the state, home visits will be capped at 30 guests and venues will need to adhere to a one person per four square metre rule.
In South Australia – which hasn’t recorded a new case – beefed up restrictions include masks in high-risk settings and reduced densities in pubs, cafes and restaurants.
Western Australia recorded one new case in a woman who briefly came into contact with another person who had visited Sydney.+9
- Sydney’s CBD is a virtual ghost town after workers were ordered to work from home once again after infections numbers rose on the weekend+9
- Mounted Police on patrol at Bondi Beach in Sydney, Monday, June 28, 2021. More than five million people in Greater Sydney and its surrounds have gone into a 14-day lockdown
In the Northern Territory, an outbreak linked to a central Australian mine has grown to seven cases, sparking an extension of a snap lockdown until at least Friday.
Labor leader Anthony Albanese continues to slam the federal government for the slow rollout and not taking charge of isolating people entering the country.
‘This is a race to get people vaccinated, it is a race also to set up national quarantine facilities,’ he told reporters in Canberra.
Ahead of thee meeting, Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews said it would be appropriate for national cabinet to discuss further limiting passenger arrivals given breaches were leading to lockdowns.
‘Hotels are made for tourists. They’re not purpose-built and they’re not much good at keeping things like the Delta variant at bay,’ he said.
Almost 7.4 million Australians have been vaccinated.
Welcome to enforced vaccination, and ongoing lockdowns, on Prison Island Australia. Mr. Morrison is beholden to the Globalists, so doesn’t care whether you live or die.
The AstraZenaca vaccine is a blood clot in a bottle, and yet Pfizer and Moderna are no better.
An indemnity scheme has been put in place for GPs to give AstraZeneca to anyone under 60 who is stupid enough to risk blood clots. Speaking after a national cabinet meeting yesterday, Scott Morrison announced no-fault indemnity for GPs who give AstraZeneca vaccines, providing legal protection for doctors in the likely event vaccination causes injury, death or loss of income for patients.
So the government will back doctors offering Astra against malpractice, and yet will fine the same Doctors for offering Hydroxychlorine as an alternative medicine for Covid 19..