Healthcare workers were the first to receive the Oxford/AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine at the Lismore Base Hospital vaccination clinic on Wednesday, 17 March.
Intensive Care Registered Nurse, Rachel Benson was the first to receive the vaccine in Lismore, and she said it was important for everyone able to be vaccinated to protect each other from COVID-19.
‘It’s another layer of protection for myself and my family, and my community, so I’m very excited to be receiving the vaccine today,’ Ms Benson said.
Infectious Diseases trainee, Dr David Stephenson, who has worked with patients who have had COVID-19, also received the vaccine today and encouraged others to do the same when it’s made available to the broader community.
‘By getting the vaccine, I’ll have more confidence in treating any future COVID-19 patients we may have,’ Dr Stephenson said.
‘When it comes to the community’s turn, I would say ‘roll up your sleeve!’
EU rollout resumes
Concerns over the Oxford/AstraZeneca that halted its use in the European Union (EU) after reports if may have caused blood clots led to a review.
The BBC has reported that ‘The European Medicines Agency (EMA) reviewed the jab after 13 EU states suspended use of the vaccine over fears of a link to blood clots.
‘It found the jab was “not associated” with a higher risk of clots.
‘Germany, France, Italy and Spain said they would resume using the jab.
All healthcare workers offered vaccine
Northern NSW Local Health District Chief Executive Wayne Jones said the clinic opening was a fantastic development in the pandemic response.
‘It’s a great milestone today that we’re providing our first COVID-19 vaccines just 366 days after our very first case of COVID-19 in Northern NSW, Mr Jones said.
‘We are more than excited to be at this point.
‘Every staff member and clinician who works in Northern NSW Local Health District will be offered a vaccination.’
Mr Jones reiterated the strong evidence around the efficacy of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine to protect against severe illness and death, which is great news for our communities and for staff working in our health facilities.
‘Every box that needs to be ticked in the development of the vaccine has been ticked,’ Mr Jones said.
‘I’ll be stepping up and getting the jab when my number comes up.’