Getting vaccinated for COVID-19

Learn about how we plan to distribute vaccine doses to Australians in 2021.

COVID-19 Vaccination logo

Will a vaccine be mandatory?

No–there are no mandatory vaccines in Australia.

While the Australian Government supports immunisation, it is not mandatory and individuals maintain the option to choose not to vaccinate.

If a safe and effective vaccine becomes available for COVID-19, the Government aims to have as many Australians as possible choose to be vaccinated for COVID-19.

Who will receive a vaccine?

The Australian Government is committed to providing all Australians with access to safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines as soon as they are available, to those who wish to vaccinate against COVID-19. As doses will initially be limited, access to vaccines during the early period of the roll out will be made available to highest priority groups.

The Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI) has provided initial advice to the Australian Government on which groups should be prioritised for the first doses for possible COVID-19 vaccination in Australia.

The ATAGI’s expert advice recommends the initial priority groups for COVID-19 immunisation should be:

  • those who have an increased risk of developing severe disease
  • those at risk of exposure, being infected with and transmitting the virus
  • those working in services critical to society functioning.

This advice is consistent with guidance from the World Health Organisation (WHO).

Learn more about the ATAGI’s advice to Government on priority population groups for COVID-19 vaccination.

How a vaccine will be distributed

The Australian Government is currently consulting with the states and territories, and medical experts on how a safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine will be distributed.

This includes setting out the roles and responsibilities of the Commonwealth and state and territory governments to implement a COVID-19 vaccine program in Australia in 2021.

The rollout program will depend on the nature and test results of the vaccines approved for use. It will also take into account current outbreaks, available public health information and advice from the experts including ATAGI. Further information on the vaccine program rollout will be provided in the coming months.

Read more about Australia's COVID-19 Vaccination Policy.  

Last updated: 
22 December 2020

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