Australians urged to go for 3-dose vaccination as Omicron rages on

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Highlights 

  • The Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI) has recommended COVID-19 booster vaccination for better immunity against the virus.
  • People in the age group of 18 years or above are eligible to receive the third dose of the vaccine.
  • Comirnaty (Pfizer) and Spikevax (Moderna) vaccines are recommended and considered equally acceptable.

Already received two doses of COVID-19 vaccine? If yes, get ready for a third COVID-19 vaccine booster dose. In the most recent release, the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI) has recommended COVID-19 booster vaccination for all those aged 18 and above, who have finished their primary course of COVID-19 vaccine at least five months ago. The recommendation has been made considering the possibility of continued transmission of both Omicron and Delta variants.

An overview of ATAGI statement

ATAGI has recommended that boosters be moved from six to five months, resulting in more than 4.1 million Australians being eligible for a booster by the end of the year (a 2.4 million increase). Only about a third of individuals who are eligible have received their booster shot.

People with elevated exposure risk or who have risk factors for severe diseases should get a booster shot as soon as possible.


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As a booster vaccine, either Comirnaty (Pfizer) or Spikevax (Moderna) is recommended and both are deemed equally acceptable. People who have received any another COVID-19 vaccine brand (AstraZeneca) for their first two doses, can also receive these vaccines.

Anyone with immunocompromising disorders should have a third (primary) dose of COVID-19 vaccination at least two months following their second dosage, according to ATAGI.

Do read: COVID-19 third shot administration starts in Australia

COVID-19 vaccine third dose for severely immunocompromised individuals

For those who are extremely immunocompromised, ATAGI advises a third dose of COVID-19 vaccination as part of the primary course. This is a third dosage to finish the usual immunisation regimen for a particularly specific group of people.

If you are severely immunocompromised, talk to your doctor or a treating expert about your specific situation. For third-dose vaccines, an mRNA vaccine (Pfizer or Moderna) is recommended.

People who have experienced serious adverse reactions to a previous mRNA vaccine dosage (Pfizer or Moderna), such as anaphylaxis or myocarditis, should talk to their doctor about having the AstraZeneca (Vaxzevria) vaccination as their booster shot.

Also read: Australia to produce mRNA vaccines at home, cranks up fight against COVID

Latest announcement from the cabinet meeting

After the most recent cabinet meeting, Australia’s Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced extra vaccine funding for clinics and pharmacies. He has also asked the country’s states to reopen hundreds of vaccination centres in order to speed up the booster rollout, which were closed when adult double-dose rates reached 80%. He further added that the decision to shorten down the waiting time for the shots would be better taken by vaccination experts.

Where can you get vaccinated?

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Everyone in Australia can avail the COVID-19 vaccine for free. There are several types of clinics providing vaccination and people can book an appointment according to their suitability.

  • Commonwealth Vaccination Clinics provide vaccination to anyone inside the country including those also who don’t hold a Medicare card.
  • General practices also provide vaccination to local communities. Either Vaxzevria (AstraZeneca) or Comirnaty (Pfizer) vaccines are provided
  • Aboriginal controlled community health services- AstraZeneca and Pfizer
  • State and territory clinics- AstraZeneca and Pfizer
  • Community pharmacies- AstraZeneca, Pfizer and Moderna

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