Australia hasn’t had a lot of COVID-19 community transmission compared to the rest of the world.
But we are at risk of outbreaks and getting vaccinated as soon as you’re eligible is important.
"If people are not immune, this virus can rapidly spread through a population. So the sooner we get a large proportion of adults vaccinated, the safer not only will we be as individuals but the group society as a whole because there will be less spread from people who have it to others and the consequences will be less."
When you weigh up the risks of getting the COVID-19 vaccine, it’s important to consider the many benefits. If you get vaccinated, you’re not only protecting yourself and your family, but everyone you come into contact with.
"If you're around anyone with a chronic condition, older age groups, by getting vaccinated, you decrease the chance that if you get the virus, you'll spread it them.
So vaccination is important not only to protect ourselves but those around us particularly the vulnerable."
There are small risks associated with vaccines, such as the rare blood clotting syndrome
associated with the AstraZeneca vaccine. The syndrome is very rare, affecting roughly one or two people
out of 100,000 in Australia. Health authorities have a better understanding of the rare blood clotting syndrome linked to the AstraZeneca vaccine. It’s now easier to diagnose and treat.
The risk of complications from the vaccine is much lower than the risks of complications and long-term health problems as a result of COVID-19.
"We're learning now that people are struggling, even once they've recovered from COVID-19, or think they have, they're struggling with fatigue, with exercise intolerance, they're struggling with concentration. They’re often not getting their smell or their taste back.
So, getting the vaccine is the best way to protect yourself."
It takes time for your body to produce immunity after a vaccine, so it’s important to get it as soon as possible. The science shows the benefits of getting the jab, far outweigh the risks. It’s also a crucial step forward in having life return to normal.