The Royal New Zealand College of General Practitioners is pleased to hear that today’s vaccine rollout plan will get the country’s GPs and general practice staff vaccinated soon.
President Dr Samantha Murton says, "For over a year our GP members have risked their lives to be the frontline defence against COVID-19 and it’s pleasing today to hear that our GPs, and their teams, will soon have an extra layer of protection beyond personal protective equipment.
"We look forward to hearing the detail of how and where New Zealanders will be vaccinated and know that general practice will continue to have a significant role to play there. I trust the Ministry will be actively speaking with general practice because we are the experts in vaccinating."
In 2020, while in lockdown, general practice delivered more Fluvax than ever before, often through inventive methods like drive-through vaccination clinics and outreach programmes to ensure vulnerable communities like elderly, Māori, and Pacific people were protected.
The College’s Medical Director Dr Bryan Betty says, "The message here is clear for New Zealanders that they need to get vaccinated, and it’s clear when that’s likely to happen for them.
"I’m particularly pleased to see the Government has addressed equity issues by ensuring the vaccine is free, fair, and equitably distributed and it’s great to see that Māori and Pacific providers will be part of this plan too.
"Ensuring access to our vulnerable populations is crucial because, although New Zealanders have been doing everything right in terms of hand-washing, social distancing, and contact tracing, we’re still at risk of the virus taking hold and that would be utterly devastating."