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Local Penrith general practices join the fight against COVID-19

Last week, general practices in the Nepean Blue Mountains region start the staged roll-out of COVID-19 vaccinations under Phase 1b of the Federal Government’s Vaccination Roll-out Strategy.

Wentworth Healthcare, the provider of the Nepean Blue Mountains Primary Health Network, has been working closely with the Department of Health to support local healthcare providers to prepare for the roll-out, which will take a staged approach over the next four weeks.

Phase 1b includes vulnerable groups, such as older people aged over 70, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples aged over 55, critical and high risk workers including healthcare, defence, police, fire, emergency services, meat processing and people with certain underlying medical conditions.

Wentworth Healthcare CEO, Lizz Reay said, “We are proud that so many general practices in our region have agreed to be COVID-19 vaccine providers and that they are rising to the many challenges of this unprecedented national roll-out.”

“We have 12 practices in Penrith now delivering the vaccine including Astley Medical Centre, Cambridge Park Doctors, Cranebrook Doctors, Derby Street Family Medical Centre, Emu Plains Medial Centre, First Care Medical Centre Cranebrook, Glenmore Park Mediclinic, Mt Pleasant Medical Practice, Penrith Medical and Fitness Centre, Southlands Family Doctors, St Clair Medical Practice and Werrington County Medical Centre,” said Ms Reay.

In addition to general practices, the region’s three COVID-19 GP-led Respiratory Clinics, that have been conducting testing over the past year, will also be offering vaccinations. The Penrith Clinic, located at Our Medical Home Penrith, 2227 Wolseley Street, Jamisontown and operated by Cornerstone Health, is commencing vaccinations on Monday 29 March.

“As the cornerstone of healthcare in the community, GPs are critical to the success of the COVID-19 immunisation program,” explained clinical lead GP at Our Medical Home Penrith, Dr Harry Pope.

“Each recipient will be screened and assessed prior to their vaccination and we are focused on ensuring adequate monitoring for any reactions afterwards.”

Ms Reay added, “We ask the community to be patient with practices, and particularly practice staff, when trying to book an appointment. There will be more opportunities for vaccination as additional GPs gradually come on board over the next 2-3 weeks.”

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