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More than 1,200 aged care residents and staff receive COVID-19 vaccine during FNQ blitz

More than 1,200 aged care residents and staff have received a COVID-19 vaccine following a recent Far North Queensland vaccination blitz.

Supported by Northern Queensland Primary Health Network (NQPHN), five vaccination teams from in-reach Commonwealth Government vaccination workforce Healthcare Australia (HCA) visited 19 residential aged care facilities in the Cassowary Coast, Cairns, Tablelands, and Douglas regions.

Another HCA team also administered vaccines at aged care facilities in Townsville, Ingham, Trebonne and Cardwell, with all the teams combined covering more than 1,200km on the road.

The ongoing vaccine rollout means that all participating aged care residents in Townsville and Cairns are expected to be fully vaccinated by the end of June.

NQPHN Chief Executive Officer Robin Whyte said the vaccination blitz for aged care residents in North Queensland was another important step in protecting older Australians.

“Aged care residents are among the most vulnerable to the impacts of COVID-19, and we need to protect them to the best of our ability throughout this pandemic,” Ms Whyte said.

“The vaccination blitz was a significant logistical exercise, with the organisation of six vaccination teams on the ground at the same time in our region, delivering COVID-19 vaccinations over just a four-day period.

“I’d like to praise everyone involved in the success of the rollout, including the vaccine providers and aged care residents and staff who helped contribute to this fantastic achievement.”

NQPHN staff also worked closely with the Department of Health, Tropical Public Health Unit and COVID-19 vaccination teams at Townsville Hospital and Health Service (HHS) and Cairns and Hinterland HHS to ensure the rollout’s success.

“Our HCA teams were welcomed into this wonderful region, and were supported by the proactive, helpful work of NQPHN to successfully reach those vulnerable mature Australians that had not yet received their first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine,” said a HCA spokesperson.

“We look forward to returning again for second doses in Week 16 of the Federal Government’s vaccination program in Australian Residential Aged Care Facilities.”

Ms Whyte said all eligible people across Queensland will have their turn to be vaccinated in the coming months, with over 50s now able to get the COVID-19 vaccine at selected General Practices, and over 40s able to register their interest.

“The Australian Government is leading a staged, gradual roll-out of the vaccine, with the most vulnerable populations being prioritised for an early vaccination,” added Ms Whyte.

To check your eligibility for a COVID-19 vaccine, visit the COVID-19 Vaccine Eligibility Checker: ( or if you prefer not to use the online option, you can call the National Coronavirus and COVID-19 Vaccination Helpline on 1800 020 080.

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