Australian doctors call for COVID-19 vaccine advertising campaign
CANBERRA, June 29 (Xinhua): Australian doctors have called for an urgent national advertising campaign to address coronavirus vaccine misinformation. The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) recently said it was critical for the government to give Australians up-to-date information about the COVID-19 vaccine program.
"There are certainly people who are having questions about their second dose, and we've got questions from the older cohorts, or refusals, which is a real concern," Karen Price, the president of the RACGP, told Nine Entertainment newspapers."I think that we risk pandemic fatigue, and then negative speculation if we are not addressing these issues.
"If we wait for supply to increase before ramping up a campaign, we are risking more people becoming hesitant in the meantime." The urge comes after Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced on Monday night that Australians under the age of 40 can go to their GPs to request AstraZeneca's COVID-19 vaccine if they wish to.
The AstraZeneca vaccine was only recommended for Australians over 60, after it was linked to a rare blood clotting disorder, but federal, state and territory leaders on Monday agreed to grant indemnity to doctors who administer the vaccine to willing under-60s. A spokesperson for the Department of Health said the campaign was being updated constantly.
"Work is under way on the next phase of the broader communications campaign, which will be timed with the ramp of the vaccination program. A start date for this new campaign is being finalized."
As of Monday afternoon, there have been 30,528 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Australia, and the numbers of locally and overseas acquired cases in the last 24 hours were 23 and six respectively, according to the latest figures updated on Monday evening from the Department of Health.