Victoria reduces third dose interval ahead of vax blitz

Booster: Victorians over the age of 18 will now be eligible to get their vital third dose of the COVID-19 vaccine after three months. Photo: AAP Photo by AAP Image

Victorians over the age of 18 will now be eligible to get their vital third dose of the COVID-19 vaccine after three months, just in time for a walk-up vaccination blitz starting on Friday.

The reduced time-frame of three months, recommended by Victoria’s public health team, means 1.2 million more Victorians can now increase their immunity before school and work returns in full.

To support an anticipated increase in demand this weekend, more workers, more cubicles, more walk-up capacity and 60,000 more appointments will be available at key vaccination centres.

Hours at major hubs including Sandown, Bendigo and La Trobe University have all been extended specifically for the blitz, which will run from this Friday to next Monday, with key clinics also offering free ice creams in collaboration with Unilever.

The effort will be supported by extra cubicles and the deployment of dozens of extra vaccinators.

Hot weather contingencies are in effect, including shade and bottled water supply at key sites in the state.

The rest of Victoria’s large state-run network will also be operating, with thousands of appointments available.

The Victorian Government is also continuing its close partnership with primary care.

Thanks to additional supply and support, the Inner North Medical Clinic and Altona North Medical Clinic will be providing almost 6000 extra vaccination appointments between them over the four-day blitz.

Victoria has already delivered more than $3 million in Vaccine Enhancement Grants to 263 GPs and pharmacies across the state, with 106 of those participants also receiving additional grants worth $10,000 each to support more staff resources this weekend.

Visit coronavirus.vic.gov.au/vaccination-centres for locations, hours and access information before walking up.

Bookings can also be made online at portal.cvms.vic.gov.au or by calling 1800 675 398.

Those who want to get their third dose at a local GP or pharmacy can also book through the online clinic finder at covid-vaccine.healthdirect.gov.au/booking/