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More opportunities to be vaccinated in Torres and Cape region

Walter Kulla Kulla and Caralyne Scotford did their part to protect themselves, baby Ella, and the Hope Vale community by getting the COVID-19 vaccine in Hope Vale on Wednesday

5 November 2021

An additional 22 vaccination clinics will be provided through to the end of November right across the Torres Strait, Northern Peninsula Area and Cape York.

Torres and Cape Hospital and Health Service Chief Executive Bev Hamerton said the 22 new clinics were in addition to a further nine new clinics announced last week, and 23 extra clinics announced in early September.

“That’s 54 new clinics added just since September to what was already a very extensive vaccination rollout schedule right across our region,’’ she said.

“We are especially targeting communities where the vaccination response has not been as great as hoped.

“We will continue to add further vaccination clinics as we progress into December.

“From this week, we have six separate vaccination teams criss-crossing our region to deliver our clinics – up from four teams previously.

“This will increase to nine teams by the end of November and then 12 teams as we move into December.

“We are providing multiple opportunities for our communities to be vaccinated and there is no excuse why they should not be so.

“The longer you leave off being vaccinated, or completing your vaccination schedule with a second dose if you have already had a first dose, the more likely it is that you will not be fully protected by the time the borders open on 17 December.

“Torres Strait, Cape York and NPA residents can check the ongoing vaccination clinic rollout schedule on the Torres and Cape Hospital and Health Service website.

“If there are no upcoming clinics in your area, all you have to do is go on the health service website and fill in a form to register your interest in being vaccinated and a vaccination will be arranged for you,’’ she said.

“You can also call us on (07) 3497 3442 or speak to your local health facility to arrange.’’

Ms Hamerton said this week, the health service delivered vaccination clinics at Thursday Island, Hope Vale and Erub (Darnley) Island.

“We also delivered an extra clinic at Aurukun, which included door-to-door visits in that community,’’ she said.

“In addition, the Royal Flying Doctor Service also offered vaccinations during their visiting medical clinics this week at Coen, Lockhart River and Kowanyama.’’

Ms Hamerton said next week, the health service would be delivering walk-in clinics at Aurukun, Wujal Wujal, Mapoon, Umagico, Kowanyama, Injinoo, Napranum, New Mapoon, Laura and Seisia.

“And the RFDS will continue offering vaccinations during their visiting clinics at Coen, Lockhart River, Pormpuraaw and Kowanyama,’’ she said.

To date in the Torres Strait, 70 per cent of the eligible population aged 12 years and over has received a first dose of vaccine through the health service and 58 per cent of people are fully vaccinated with both doses.

Cape York has 57 per cent of the total estimated eligible population aged 12 years and over who have received their first dose of vaccine through the Torres and Cape HHS vaccination program alone, with 46 per cent now fully vaccinated with two doses.

In the Northern Peninsula area, 44 per cent of the eligible population has received the first dose of a COVID-19 vaccination so far, with 36 per cent fully vaccinated.

Across the Torres and Cape HHS as a whole, about 48.5 per cent of the eligible population aged 12 years and over is now fully vaccinated with two doses of vaccine

NOTE: percentages quoted above relate to vaccinations delivered by the Torres and Cape Hospital and Health Service only and do not include vaccinations delivered separately through other providers and external agencies. As a result, overall total regional vaccination rates will likely be higher.

PHOTO CAPTION: Walter Kulla Kulla and Caralyne Scotford did their part to protect themselves, baby Ella, and the Hope Vale community by getting the COVID-19 vaccine in Hope Vale on Wednesday.

Last updated: 5 November 2021