The Murrumbidgee Primary Health Network (MPHN) is calling for local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders to book in for their vaccination against the novel coronavirus as Greater Sydney continues to grapple with a growing outbreak.
Wiradjuri woman, Aunty Gail Manderson, joined the Riverina Medical and Dental Aboriginal Corporation to encourage everyone in the community to come forward and get their vaccination.
"It is important that all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people make sure they are vaccinated against COVID-19," Aunty Gail said.
"This is the best way to protect ourselves and our communities from the effects of this terrible virus.
COVID-19 could have a devastating impact on us in the bush and the vaccine is the best tool we have to prevent that from happening."
Currently, the vaccine is available to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people over the age of 18.
Stacey O'Hara Chief Executive Officer of the Griffith Aboriginal Medical Service said it was of 'critical importance' that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples get fully vaccinated as soon as they can.
"These community members have higher rates of pre existing and chronic health conditions and this dramatically increases the risk of getting sick or even dying from COVID," Mrs O'Hara said.
"The vaccine reduces the risk of severe health episodes and it will safeguard our local community."
MPHN acting CEO, Julie Redway said that people should remain patient and stay informed as the COVID-19 vaccination rollout continues to gain momentum.
"We all share the responsibility of protecting ourselves, our families and the wider community," Mrs Redway said.
The Griffith Aboriginal Medical Service will start offering Pfizer as a vaccine option alongside AstraZeneca from Monday July 26. Appointments can be made by ringing reception.
For more information on Murrumbidgee region vaccination hubs, general practices and participating Aboriginal medical services please visit www.mphn.org.au/covid19-vaccine
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