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Lagging metro COVID-19 vaccination rate drags all health workers into line

A new health direction has been issued in South Australia requiring all health workers to receive at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine by the 8th of November.

Public sector workers will have to comply a week earlier.

The latest state vaccine mandate is set to affect staff in GP clinics, dental clinics and pharmacies and is understood to have surfaced as a result of slowing vaccination rates in Adelaide’s northern suburbs.

Other non-government allied health professionals including physiotherapists, podiatrists, speech pathologists, optometrists and others working in health administration and testing could also be affected.

Thursday's statistics showed 60 per cent of South Australians aged 16 and over are now fully vaccinated and 77 per cent have had at least one dose.

South Australia’s Deputy Chief Public Health Officer Emily Kirkpatrick said vaccine hesitancy wasn’t exclusive to COVID-19 vaccines and had existed in the community prior to the onset of the pandemic.

"We know there is a level of hesitancy that will exist across the community.”
"Unfortunately COVID will enter the state at some point, so we have to try to get those hesitancy levels as low as possible.”

Flow understands that over 300 healthcare workers in one of Adelaide’s biggest private hospital networks are opposed to receiving the COVID-19 vaccine.

A meeting scheduled for next week is set to determine the healthcare network’s next move after the latest mandate for private healthcare workers.


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