Illawarra Family Medical Centre is pleased to advise that we are an approved vaccination provider for COVID-19 vaccines. We are happy to help provide COVID-19 immunisations for our local area and wider community.
Unfortunately, due to high demand and limited stock supply, Pfizer vaccine appointments are booked out until September.
We are currently not taking any bookings.
We expect to reopen online bookings from the 18th August.
Bookings for Pfizer vaccines will be available online only through HotDoc, from Monday 12th July 2021.
IFMC will be administering Pfizer vaccines in dedicated clinics from mid July.
Bookings will be via HotDoc, which is available through the online bookings tab on our website or through the HotDoc app.
For further details please check our website, Facebook page and HotDoc from Friday 9th July 2021.
Our Reception staff are unable to assist with earlier bookings.
Clinics for the Astra Zeneca vaccine may be booked online or in person. Patients over the age of 60 are eligible for vaccination and are urged to make appointments through HotDoc or IFMC Reception.
If you have an existing appointment for your second dose of the Astra Zeneca vaccine, please do not cancel this booking as per the current guidelines.
The Health Department has accepted the advice of ATAGI to change the recommended appropriate age group for Astra Zeneca vaccine administration to 60 years and over.
At present we have not received any official notification of change to the vaccine rollout guidelines.
If you have an appointment at IFMC to receive the Astra Zeneca vaccination, it is strongly encouraged that you do not try to cancel or change your booked appointment.
If your appointment is affected you will be personally contacted by the Practice and advised of the necessary changes going forward at IFMC to ensure you are properly vaccinated.
We have now received a limited supply of COVID-19 vaccine stock. Online bookings are preferred.
Please visit HotDoc or our website to check your eligibility and to book your COVID-19 vaccine OR follow the link below.
Due to ongoing restricted supply, COVID vaccine clinics have been booked out until September and therefore online appointments are currently unavailable. Please call the practice and speak to a receptionist to book your COVID vaccine appointment.
Over the last several Wednesdays, the designated COVID-19 clinic at IFMC has successfully immunised patients and the broader Illawarra community against Coronavirus.
Due to patient numbers and limited vaccine allocation:
The next available vaccine appointment at this designated clinic is in September.
All patients scheduled for their first and their second dose as of THURSDAY 22nd of APRIL are assured that IFMC will go ahead with administering YOUR dose.
IFMC, over the course of the last 2 months, worked very hard in securing as many appointments as possible for those vulnerable in the Illawarra community. Due to increased popularity and a limited supply to accommodate, IFMC can no longer guarantee a COVID-19 vaccine appointment until September at this stage.
With the increase of clinics rather than increased vaccine supply to existing clinics, there are new opportunities to get vaccinated at other recently elected sites. If this is something you are considering or there is any confusion with the above, do not hesitate to make an appointment with your Doctor.
With that said:
IFMC has been advised that supply will increase, and the Practice will immediately open new appointments and vaccine opportunities to the Illawarra when safely positioned.
The IFMC Website and the IFMC Facebook Page will constantly keep patients and the wider community up to date with the Practice's latest information on COVID-19.
IFMC is exceptionally grateful for everyone's continued patience, understanding and support.
In light of the recent advice provided by the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation, the AstraZeneca vaccine has been reviewed and new changes have been advised for Practices in Australia.
The main change being the use of Comirnaty (Pfizer) vaccine in adults aged under 50 years.
What is this side effect that everyone is talking about associated with the AstraZeneca vaccine?
There is evidence of a likely but extremely rare link between the AstraZeneca vaccine and blood clotting syndrome (thrombosis with Thrombocytopenia.
The recommendation by the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation is that use of Pfizer is preferred over AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine in adults under 50 years old who have not already had a first dose of AstraZeneca vaccine.
Is the AstraZeneca vaccine safe?
The Individual benefit to risk balance of vaccination with the AstraZeneca vaccine varies with age.
This balance is based on factors including the:
increased risk of complications from COVID-19 increasing with age
potential lower risk of this very rare but serious adverse event with increasing age.
AstraZeneca vaccine remains safe to be given to people over the age of 50 based on the conclusions reached by the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI).
I had my first dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine what happens now?
If you have had your first vaccine dose without side effect or other serious adverse effects, you should receive you second dose as planned and scheduled.
What if I am worried about side effects?
If you have had your first vaccine dose without side effect or other serious adverse effects, An appointment with your doctor would allow for individual benefit to risk balance to be carried out and assessed to find the best solution for your health needs at this stage of the year.
I'm booked in for my first dose of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine, What should I do?
If you are an adult aged under 50 years, you should receive a first dose of AstraZeneca where the benefit of receiving the vaccine clearly and evidently outweighs the risk in your individual circumstance. - This can be discussed with your Doctor.
If you have not already received a first dose of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine, then the Pfizer vaccine is preferred in adults aged 50 years and under based on the recent research associated.
The Illawarra Family Medical Centre is currently working on a way to provide a solution to the above sudden changes.
The Pfizer vaccine must be stored at below -70 degrees celsius. This specific storage requirement limits current elected COVID-19 vaccine Practices around Australia as this type of storage set up is very rare and extremely specialised.
The Illawarra Family Medical Centre is currently undergoing discussions to offer and provide a solution to patients.
The current information about how receive the Pfizer vaccine will be available on the Department of Health Website shortly.
If you are 50 years of age and older, you can still receive your AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine at the Practice.
PLEASE THEREFORE READ BELOW:
The free vaccines are rolled-out in phases such that priority groups receive their vaccination earlier. At this stage 50 years and Over for those that fall in to category 1B. below is a link to the Eligibility Checker to assess your eligibility.
Online and phone bookings are available at IFMC with our COVID-19 Vaccination clinics. Please keep up to date by checking our Facebook page, website or calling reception on (02) 4252 5200 for more information.
At this stage vaccines will continue to be administered during dedicated clinics.
Preparing for your COVID-19 vaccine
The National Roll-out Strategy provides the following advice to help you prepare for the COVID-19 vaccine.
Evidence of Vaccination
Once you have had your vaccinations, we will report to the Australian Immunisation Register (AIR). You will then be able to access your immunisation history through your Medicare Online account, the Medicare Express Plus app, myGov or My Health Record. We can also provide paper-based copies if required.
Frequently asked questions
Please follow the link for answers to common COVID-19 Vaccine questions.
What about my Flu Vaccination?
It is recommended to not schedule and administer the influenza and COVID-19 vaccine on the same day. The preferred minimum timeframe between these vaccines is 14 days.
If you have been elected via the online vaccine eligibility checker into Phase 2 of the national rollout, the current recommendation is to book in for your Fluvax now, prior to getting the COVID-19 immunisation.
Private Fluvax’s are available now.
If you are eligible for a free Fluvax we are expecting delivery early April.
Stay up to date via our Facebook page and website or speak with reception. (02 42525200)
Contact the National Coronavirus and COVID-19 Vaccine Helpline on