Vaccinations are our way out of the pandemic and into the new normal. The Prime Minister promised that, by the end of March, four million Australians would be vaccinated. That goal will not be achieved. Since September last year, the government has known that vaccines were coming. It had six months to prepare and plan for an admittedly huge logistical undertaking. But now we find ourselves in a situation where GPs are being flooded by calls for a vaccine they don't have. The Royal Australian College of GPs has pleaded with the federal government to not give unrealistic expectations around the COVID-19 vaccine rollout.
I've had inquiries to my office from older Australians asking when and where they will be able to access the vaccine. The news is not great. At present, there is only one GP in my electorate that is administering the vaccine. The health minister said yesterday the government has enough vaccines for every Australian three times over. So we have enough vaccines but not enough places or people to administer them. It reminds me of the Yes Minister episode about a hospital with no patients. The Prime Minister and the health minister need to stop the spin, stop the PR and stop the photo-ops. This is a global health crisis to manage. My constituents want better and they want their vaccination soon.