Vaccine mandate for ACT disabled workers | Canberra Times

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Canberra disability support workers and community caregivers will be mandated to receive a COVID-19 vaccine. The new public health order in the capital will require workers to have received their first dose by 15 November and be fully vaccinated by 13 December. ACT Health Minister Rachel Stephen-Smith said the decision followed a large number of talks with the sector. It was originally proposed that workers should be fully vaccinated by November 29, but the mandate was pushed back by two weeks after consultation. “Stakeholders felt that the ACT’s public health direction should be more in line with the approach taken with NSW,” Stephen-Smith said. “That is why we have a consultation process, and I am convinced that the direction to be signed today will meet the needs of the sectors concerned while protecting society.” Health professionals and teachers at ACT have already been given a mandate to be fully vaccinated. More than 92 percent of the eligible population aged 12 and over are fully vaccinated in the national capital. It comes as Canberrans will be able to receive a booster shot from Monday. Individuals who received their full vaccine course more than six months ago can now get the Pfizer top-up shot at a government clinic, no matter what vaccine brand they already had. Immunocompromised Canberrans have already been able to get a booster shot. ACT chief Andrew Barr said the third dose would provide an extra layer of protection against COVID as restrictions in the capital ease. “Canberrans has shown great enthusiasm for being vaccinated and we expected this to be transferred to the booster program,” Mr Barr said. Canberra’s COVID figures are expected to be released later Monday morning. Australian Associated Press

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