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'Not an option': you might need 3 doses to be 'fully vaccinated' in Australia soon

National cabinet is expected to change the definition of 'fully vaccinated' to include a booster dose

Cassidy Knowlton
Written by
Cassidy Knowlton

Australians might soon have to get a booster dose of a Covid-19 vaccine to be considered 'fully vaccinated', Victorian premier Dan Andrews has revealed. 

At a January 19 media conference, Andrews confirmed national cabinet had been discussing making the booster dose mandatory for certain sectors, and that an announcement would be made 'very soon'. 

"The health minister last Monday made a number of announcements for a number of different classes of worker... There’s every chance that we add to that list, for the best of reasons. We mandated a number of people, many people across many different sectors, a first and second dose, and I think you’ll see very soon, out of national processes, you’ll see the terminology and the recognition of the third dose be crystal clear."

Andrews said a third dose was the best way to ensure protection against Covid-19 and that 'full vaccination' would soon mean a course of three shots.

"This is not an option, not an add-on, not 'a good thing to have'," Andrews said. "I think we’re close to a change in policy that will simply reflect the fact that in order to be fully protected, you need three doses, not two plus an optional extra, to in fact be fully vaccinated. You need three. We can all be proud, as a Victorian community, that 93 per cent-plus of us have had two doses. We need to make sure the number of those with a third dose grows every day. It’s a common-sense thing. We need to make it easier for people to get that third dose, and I think Victorians will absolutely do that."

To support more people rolling up their sleeves for a third dose, the government has shortened the time between a second a third shot, from four months to three. The Victorian government is also offering 60,000 additional walk-in appointments between January 21-24, a so-called 'booster blitz'. As of the time of publication, just 25.2 per cent of adults over the age of 16 in Victoria had received a third dose of a vaccine.

Want to book your booster? Here's what you need to know.

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