Vaccine Operations Centre – Weekly Operational Update – 17 May 2021

A statement from the Vaccine Operations Centre on the status of the vaccine rollout.

Date published:
Media type:
General public

A total of 3,100,137 vaccinations have been completed as increasing supplies of vaccine are delivered to more than 5,280 sites across the country.

As of today, 5,541,184 doses of vaccine have been delivered to those sites by the Australian Government, with 4,622,610 doses available for use.

The Vaccine Operations Centre (VOC) continues to play a lead role in the vaccination rollout. It is working in close partnership with the States, Territories and the primary care sector to safely, securely and efficiently store, transport, deliver and administer COVID-19 vaccines across Australia.

Operations Coordinator of the VOC, Commodore Eric Young, CSC, RAN, said: “Last week, more than 430,000 doses were administered across the country, taking the total doses administered over 3 million.

“Reaching this milestone provides us an opportunity to stop and reflect on the vaccination program. It took 47 days to reach 1 million doses, a further 19 days to reach 2 million doses and another 17 days to reach 3 million. The rate of vaccinations continue to increase, despite a recent period during which the program was re-calibrated to implement the direction from National Cabinet, predominantly limiting Pfizer to those under 50.

“It also provides an opportunity to thank everyone who has, and continues to contribute to the program, including our suppliers, Pfizer, AstraZeneca and CSL, our logistics partners DHL and Linfox, our vaccination workforce providers, Health Care Australia, Aspen, International SOS and Sonic, everyone in the supply chain and those in the Commonwealth, States and Territories, working together every day to make it possible.”

“Last week, I was honoured to meet and thank a number of people from DHL, Linfox, NSW Health, Pfizer and Sonic in person, and I look forward to meeting and thanking more people in the weeks ahead.”

On Thursday 15 May, eligible Australians who had previously registered their interest in a vaccination, were contacted by direct message. Furthermore, the Eligibility Checker, available at continues to be updated, so that all eligible Australians know how and where to access a COVID vaccine.

Supplying and producing the vaccine

Last week, 351,000 doses of Pfizer and 1,030,600 doses of AstraZeneca were released. Over the coming days, the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) will conduct sample testing of 352,000 doses of Pfizer vaccine which arrived in Australia last night, along with another 1 million doses of AstraZeneca produced onshore by CSL, prior to releasing the vaccines for distribution.

Distributing the vaccine

Last week, more than 958,000 vaccine doses were delivered across the country to Metropolitan, Rural and Remote locations, along with nearly 3,000 deliveries of consumables. This week, another 750,000 doses of vaccines will be delivered to 3,000 locations across Australia, including the first to the Royal Flying Doctor Service to support vaccinations in Remote Western Australia.  

  • Ordering and Delivery. 99.9% of orders were completed last week with three orders to be finalised today. The VOC continues to work with clinics and delivery sites to implement ongoing and positive improvements in the ordering system and certainty around orders placed, particularly as we continue to increase the doses delivered.
  • Consumables. All consumables were delivered last week to support administering of vaccines across Australia this week.
  • Australia’s assistance to the Pacific. The VOC continues to work closely with the Departments of Health, Defence and Foreign Affairs and Trade supporting vaccine supply to pacific partners in need, and have made 58,000 doses available for distribution to the Pacific, including PNG, Timor-Leste, Solomon Islands and Fiji. Another 20,000 doses will be provided to DFAT this week.
  • Cold chain. The VOC continues to work closely with stakeholders to handle cold chain queries. A comprehensive cold chain management and investigation process is in place to ensure the safety of the vaccine. Where a site is affected, clear guidance is provided in relation to the continued use of the vaccine, or the need to be returned, including replacement of any vaccines.

Administering the vaccine

We have 4,397 General Practices, 136 Commonwealth Vaccination Clinics (CVCs – formerly GPRCs) and 153 Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services (ACCHS) on board this week, along with 611 state and territory sites, taking the total number of vaccination sites across the country to 5,297.

Last week, a record number of doses were administered across the country, with more than 430,000 doses taking the total to 3,100,137. An analysis of the data demonstrates a significant weekday average increase of more than 5,000 doses per day from the week prior. This resulted from an increase in Pfizer vaccinations to those under 50, as well as ongoing positive uptake by those 50 and over. That States and Territories continue to increase their rate of vaccination, and last week passed 1 million doses administered.    

With our vaccine workforce service providers, we continue to focus on those most at risk in our Residential Aged Care Facilities (RACF), and have now completed first dose visits to 2,163 facilities (84%) and 1,538 second dose visits (60%). We are also ramping up our visits to disability residents with complex needs who require in-reach services, with 47 visits conducted last week.  

The VOC remains focussed on supporting vaccinations for our most vulnerable Australians, every day.

About the Vaccine Operations Centre

Contact: Health Media –

For full list of publicly available data on the vaccine rollout.


Help us improve

If you would like a response please use the enquiries form instead.