Vaccine roll-out begins
The highly anticipated roll-out of COVID-19 vaccines among the East Pilbara’s Indigenous communities is set to be led by Puntukurnu Aboriginal Medical Service, with the first inoculations administered at the facility last week.
Frontline workers at PAMS rolled up their sleeves to receive the jab, marking the start of building community confidence in the vaccine among Indigenous people identified as a priority group for the roll-out.
PAMS senior property assets and maintenance officer Murray Holliday was the first employee to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.
Mr Holliday said he hoped to set an example for the community and encouraged others to get vaccinated early to help keep the regions safe.
“Vaccination is the best way to protect yourself and your loved ones from COVID-19,” he said.
“I hope I can set an example and encourage more people to book in to get vaccinated.”
PAMS practitioner Dr Simon Slota-Kan said he urged locals to receive the vaccine and protect the community.
Federal Minister for Indigenous Australians Ken Wyatt, who visited Newman last week, said the successful leadership shown by local elders and Aboriginal organisations has been brought to the fore during the vaccine roll-out.
“It’s been a great outcome and it’s a beautiful facility that caters for the health needs of people here in the region, particularly the Martu people.
“Here at PAMS they have vaccines, they have a mobile team, they are making sure that people are vaccinated and we’ve got 147 Aboriginal community controlled health organisations across the country rolling out the vaccines.
“They’re doing a tremendous job in having people vaccinated and the way in which they are doing it people (are) coming forward and they’re not afraid to have a vaccines because they want to be protected.”
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