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23 Aug 2020

 AMA President, Dr Omar Khorshid, said today a COVID-19 vaccination is likely to be the only way Australia will successfully be able to emerge from the Coronavirus pandemic.

“It is pleasing to see that the efforts of the medical and scientific community to fast track a safe and effective vaccine are going well and that the Government has a plan to make a vaccine available to all Australians.

“The greatest challenge is likely to be accessing enough doses of an approved vaccine and we expect that it will take some time to provide enough vaccine for the whole population. 

“We need to develop a plan for a Therapeutics Goods Administrated (TGA) endorsed vaccine to be distributed to at risk groups first, particularly the aged and those with other health conditions leaving them at increased risk.

“After vulnerable groups have been provided with the vaccine, it should then be rolled out to other groups. All front-line health care workers should be allowed early access to an approved vaccine.

“I’ll be one of the first to roll up my own sleeve to receive a dose.

“Australians will be willingly queuing up to get a vaccine because it’s the only to get back to the lives we led before COVID-19.

“There are of course implementation issues yet to be tackled about how to distribute a vaccine to those who need it.

“We know there are often distribution problems in getting the influenza vaccination distributed on time and to those who need it first.

“To ensure Australia is ready and able to get a vaccination out, be it the Oxford vaccination or any other vaccine approved for use by Australian authorities, we need a national COVID-19 vaccine distribution plan.

“The AMA is willing to work with governments to plan a vaccine distribution plan so that all Australians will be able to have fair access to a vaccination when approved by the authorities,” Dr Khorshid said.

23 August 2020

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Published: 23 Aug 2020