Supply meets demand for Beaudesert's COVID-19 vaccine rollout

SAFER: Beaudesert aged care resident Linda Hovey, seen here with daughter Rhonda Collins, had to social distance on her 100th birthday last year. Now 101, Ms Hovey has been vaccinated for COVID-19. Photo: Larraine Sathicq

SAFER: Beaudesert aged care resident Linda Hovey, seen here with daughter Rhonda Collins, had to social distance on her 100th birthday last year. Now 101, Ms Hovey has been vaccinated for COVID-19. Photo: Larraine Sathicq

BEAUDESERT aged care facilities and medical centres are on track for the COVID-19 vaccination despite a national outcry about supply issues.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison today confirmed there were supply issues but denied laying blame on the European Union for the dearth of vaccines.

"I simply stated a fact - that 3.1 million of the contracted vaccines that we had been relying upon in early January, when we'd set out a series of targets, did not turn up in Australia," he said.

"That is just a simple fact. Now, that fact has been the key reason for the early phases of the supply shortage in the rollout in the vaccine."

At Beaudesert, supply has largely met demand, according to most local health experts.

At Whiddon Beaudesert Star, a spokeswoman said the COVID-19 vaccination program started on April 1.

"Residents received the first dose of the vaccination, with the second dose scheduled for Saturday, April 24," she said.

"Out of 98 residents, 92 received the first dose.

"On the day, there were left-over vaccinations available which were administered to 18 of our employees.

"To date, we have not received a timeline as to when Whiddon employees across our sites will receive the vaccination."

Wongaburra chief executive Atul Kumar Singh said 96 of the 116 residents at the aged care home recived their first vaccine on March 31.

"Those who gave their consent received the Pfizer vaccine and the 20 who did not consent did so for multiple reasons, including those who are on a palliative care pathway," he said.

Mr Singh said vaccination was not mandatory for employees but diminished workforce was a major problem during COVID lockdowns.

"Of about 170 staff members, 24 consented and I was the first to receive the vaccine," he said.

"Obviously we still have a long way to go but we are working through it and what it means is we will have a lot more staff who can work if there were to be another outbreak.

"We hope that won't happen but we're confident that if it does it won't have such a devastating effect."

Mr Singh said booster shots would be given on April 21 and the vaccination program would also allow more families to visit loved ones.

"Family will be able to visit residents in their rooms so long as those relatives have also been vaccinated for COVID-19," he said.

"This is one positive in the last year and a half.

"When there is an outbreak it seems we shut down at a whim.

"We have been copping a lot from families but we have to follow government directives and this is for the protection of the community."

Beaudesert Medical Centre is also keeping up with demand, according to local GP Dr Michael Rice.

"Our practice has been allocated as much as we can give," he said.

"We are vaccinating about 400 people a week .. we're keeping up with supply but if we were supplied more I think we would struggle to give it."

Beaudesert Family Practice at Beaudesert Fair is also administering the vaccine.

Practice manager Laura Gilbert said the medical centre was allocated 50 vaccines a week but had been experiencing supply issues.

"We were meant to get 100 vaccines a fortnight but it's looking more like every three weeks at the moment," she said.

"We have an extensive waiting list.

"We could definitely keep up if we were sent more vaccines."