By Alesha Capone
Residents at aged care homes in three Wyndham suburbs will be among the first in the country to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.
According to the federal health department, phase 1a of the roll-out, which began this week, will start with aged care centres in 44 suburbs and towns in Victoria including Werribee, Hoppers Crossing and Point Cook.
Aged care homes in Altona Meadows, Ballarat, Cowes, Drouin, Lara and Delacombe have also been included in the first week of the roll out.
Hundreds of aged care residents, staff and people connected to Wyndham aged care home were diagnosed with the COVID-19 last year.
More than 300 cases were linked to the Baptcare Wyndham Lodge Community in Werribee, 118 cases to the Mecwacare John Atchison Centre Hoppers Crossing and 113 cases to the Glendale Aged Care Facility in Werribee.
A spokesperson from Allity Aged Care, which runs the Glendale Aged Care Facility, welcomed the roll out of the vaccine.
“Protecting our residents from COVID-19 has been our priority since the pandemic began,” the spokesperson said.
“As such, we welcome the opportunity for Glendale Aged Care residents to be among the first to receive the COVID-19 vaccine in Australia.”
The federal government has advised that Victoria can expect to receive approximately 11,000 vaccine doses per week during the initial roll-out, although this will be dependent on supply.
Distribution will begin with the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, while the AstraZeneca/Oxford vaccine is expected to be ready from early March.
The first vaccination hubs in the state will be based at Sunshine Hospital, University Hospital Geelong, Austin Health in Heidelberg and the Monash Medical Centre Clayton.
Frontline healthcare workers, such as paramedics and hospital staff, will be among the first people to get vaccinations at these hubs.
Western Health will manage the Sunshine Hospital Hub.
Chief executive Russell Harrison said that an expert team of Western Health staff have spent weeks planning and recruiting staff for the vaccination hub.
Western Health will also manage a range of other vaccination clinic locations, including one to be based at Werribee Mercy Hospital.
As of December 1 last year, Wyndham had recorded 2266 cases of coronavirus, the highest in the state.