01 January 2019

Getting vaccinated is as easy as dropping in to your local chemist shop under changes coming in from January 1.

Trained pharmacists across NSW will join GPs and accredited nurse immunisers in now being able to give a range of injections, including for measles and whooping cough, for anyone over the age of 16.

“People will have more choice when it comes to vaccination, and whether you live in regional NSW or the city, that’s a good thing,” Mr Barilaro said.

“In regional and remote parts of NSW, it can be hard to access a GP. That’s why having the option of a trained pharmacist makes things so much easier.”

Trained pharmacist vaccinators can now give both the diphtheria, tetanus and whooping cough combination vaccine and the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine, in addition to the flu vaccine, to people over 16.

Vaccinations are administered in a private room on the pharmacy premises, with trained pharmacists conducting pre-jab assessments to assess current health status. Once administered, the shots are reported to the Australian Immunisation Register.

Health Minister Brad Hazzard said the record high rates of vaccination in NSW is a great public health achievement.

“Now, with this additional range of vaccinations available from pharmacists, we want to encourage new grandparents, carers of infants, and partners of pregnant women to get vaccinated to ensure they don’t catch whooping cough and pass it on to their babies,” Mr Hazzard said.

NSW has achieved its highest vaccination rates ever and is spending a record $22.75 million in 2018-19 on state-wide immunisation programs.

People eligible for free government-funded vaccines, including children under five, Aboriginal people, those with chronic illnesses, pregnant women and people over 65 will still need to access these vaccines via their GP, so they can get a health assessment at the same time.