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Austin Health has established a COVID-19 pop up vaccination clinic at the Melbourne Wholesale Market in Epping, ensuring essential workers in Victoria’s fresh produce supply chain are protected.
The vaccination hub – which became operational yesterday – will operate for the next three weeks administering Pfizer vaccines to members of the Market community.
Nurse Unit Manager for Austin Health’s COVID-19 Vaccination Program, Sean Mace, said the first day went well, with 245 people rolling up their sleeves to be vaccinated.
“There were many clients coming through with lots of questions from other colleagues around the Market and once the questions were answered, they were happy to go back and encourage their colleagues to step forward and do their part,” he said.
To ensure the vaccination hub operates smoothly on a daily basis, an additional 15 to 20 Austin Health staff members have been trained, on top of the staffing requirements needed at the Heidelberg Repatriation Hospital and ONJ Cancer Wellness & Research Centre vaccination clinics.
“Overall it has gone really smoothly, with the Melbourne Market team doing an amazing job to accommodate us at the site. Healthcare and our workflows are very different to what they are used to,” Sean said.
The Melbourne Market is Victoria’s wholesale fruit, vegetable and flower trading centre, with more than 5,000 businesses using the Market as a base, buying and selling fresh produce in the early hours of the morning for distribution across Victoria and Australia.
Melbourne Market Authority CEO, Mark Maskiell, said he was pleased with the turnout yesterday.
“Almost all fresh produce found at local greengrocers, independent supermarkets, restaurants and cafes in Victoria is sold here at the Melbourne Market, so having as many of our market community vaccinated as possible goes a long way in helping to protect Victoria's fresh produce supply chain," he said.