COVID-19 vaccine rollout falls behind schedule with only one third of projected vaccinations in aged care being completed in first week– prompting the ADF to step in and help

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The rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine in aged care homes has already fallen behind schedule with only 150 of the 240 homes set for first week jabs starting their vaccinations by the goal date of February 28.

The Federal Government had earlier said it expected 30,000 aged care residents and staff, across 240 homes, to receive the vaccine in the first week of the vaccination process.

As of March 2, only 13,348 residents and staff across 158 aged care sites had received a vaccination, a little over a third of the projected total for the first week of the rollout.

In some instances, nurses were unable to administer the vaccine because they were waiting for syringes while others were forced to throw out vaccine doses over fears they hadn’t been stored correctly.

The Government has put blame on Healthcare Australia, which was contracted to conduct the rollout in NSW and QLD, for the slow start. 

Healthcare Australia also came under fire during the first week of the vaccination rollout after an 88-year-old man and 94-year-old woman were given four times the recommended dose in a Queensland aged care home.

The doctor, who hadn’t been trained correctly, was stood down and the organisation’s CEO Jason Cartwright agreed to stand aside while the Government investigated the incident.

In response to the slow rollout the Australian Defence Force has been brought in to help administer vaccinations in aged care homes.

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