Boost for GPs & pharmacies, to get grants for vaccine push

By Our Reporter
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Representational image only. Photo by National Cancer Institute on Unsplash

The Victorian Government is offering grants of $4,000 and up to $10,000 to GPs and community pharmacies in 11 key Local Government Areas across Melbourne, helping them to turbocharge the local rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine.

The COVID-19 Vaccination Enhancement Grants will help participating providers use their full vaccine allocations and promote points of access within their local communities, supporting them to fund additional workforce or operational costs associated with the effort, an official press release said.

With this support, primary care providers across Melbourne’s outer suburbs have the potential to deliver innovative, large-scale vaccination sessions in central and familiar locations, including with walk-up opportunities.

Grants of $4,000 will be available to 120 providers who are successful through an Expression of Interest process. Up to 10 grants can be increased to $10,000 if providers can demonstrate further capacity to deliver.

The first locations for these grants will be suburbs in Moreland—however, the EOI will be open to all GPs and Pharmacies in the priority Local Government Areas of Brimbank, Cardinia, Casey, Darebin, Greater Dandenong, Hobsons Bay, Hume, Melton, Whittlesea and Wyndham.

While general practices and pharmacies will remain funded by the Commonwealth to deliver vaccines, Victoria’s grant program is about providing additional support that can make a difference quickly—and reflects the urgent need to increase uptake in Melbourne’s young and diverse outer suburban communities.

At the commencement of the Commonwealth’s COVID-19 vaccination program, states and territories were slated to deliver around a quarter of all vaccines. Currently, the Victorian Government has delivered around half of all vaccinations across the state, and is proud to work alongside GPs and community pharmacies in a partnership to protect all Victorians.

Almost 80 per cent of Victorians have received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. Importantly, all providers in Victoria now have more certainty of Pfizer supply in October.

Providers selected for a COVID-19 Vaccination Enhancement Grant must demonstrate that they are able to maximise their dose administration in the weeks commencing 4 and 11 October. They must have the infrastructure and workforce available to deliver this supply, with walk-ups permitted if safe and feasible.

The Expression of Interest form is available at www.coronavirus.vic.gov.au/vaccination-enhancement-grants. The EOI must be completed by 12pm 3 October, and successful providers will be notified by Monday 4 October and invited to a briefing that evening. Funding will be released as soon as practicable.


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