December 15, 2021

Dear colleagues,

We’re in the final stretch to the Christmas break now, but there’s still lots going on in regards to COVID-19 vaccination.

Booster dose interval now five months

With the presence in Australia of both the Omicron and Delta variants, ATAGI now recommends COVID-19 vaccine booster shots for people who completed their primary course of vaccination five or more months ago, rather than six months ago.

This means that by the end of December, more than 4 million Australians will be eligible for a booster compared to 1.75 million people if the six-month interval had been retained.

If you’re now eligible, don’t delay – you can get your booster at our Melton and Sunshine vaccination hubs, at regular staff pop-ups at our campuses and of course at participating GPs and pharmacists.

Booster pop-up for staff at Footscray Hospital

Our Outreach Vaccination Team will be back at Footscray Hospital (Mavis Mitchell Room) this Friday 17 December from 9am-3.30am.

Vaccination rollout for 5-11 year olds starts 10 January

Our West Metro COVID-19 Vaccination Program team will play a part in the vaccination of the 5–11-year-old cohort – along with primary care and school-based pop-ups coordinated by the Department of Health and the Department of Education and Training. Plans are underway now in regards to making these sites appealing to this age group.

The vaccination program will start on 10 January with the aim of fully vaccinating the cohort – 580,000 kids across Victoria – by the end of Term 1 2022.

For the parents and guardians among staff, we’ll look to organise a webinar and Q&A on this topic with Dr Marion Kainer, our Head of Infectious Diseases, in the new year.

Mandatory vaccination second dose milestone now passed

A reminder that in order to work at a healthcare setting, you must now be able to provide evidence to your employer that you:

  • are fully vaccinated with two doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, or
  • have a valid medical exemption and you have provided a copy of the COVID-19 digital certificate, once the exemption has been processed, to the health service operator. The digital certificate can be added to the Service Victoria or Medicare app, saved to a smartphone wallet, or can be printed. (Visit Services Australia for more information on COVID-19 medical exemptions).

Vaccination hub video montage

Australia is one of the most vaccinated countries in the world and our West Metro COVID-19 Vaccination Program played no small part in that. To look back on the scale of what we’ve achieved this year, we’ve put together a short video montage of our vaccination program – from Melbourne Airport in February through to now. Thank you to everyone involved in this amazing accomplishment.


Shane Crowe
Executive Director Nursing and Midwifery