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Expert group warns about COVID-19 vaccination targets

Senior Aboriginal Practitioner at WA's Beagle Bay clinic, Vaughan Matsumoto receives a coronavirus vaccine Source: AAP

A group of experts from across different industries have come together to call for Australia's COVID-19 re-opening plan. Revisions include specific vaccination targets for the most vulnerable groups, including Indigenous Australians.

A network of about 50 experts across health, engineering and law say the country’s 80 per cent COVID-19 vaccination target for its adult population risks leaving many Australians behind.

The alliance of experts operates under the name OzSAGE which stands for the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies - based on a UK group operating under the same name.

Professor Nancy Baxter is the Head of the Melbourne School of Population and Global Health and is an OzSAGE member.

She says those from lower socio-economic backgrounds, who face more barriers accessing healthcare, need to be prioritised in the vaccine rollout.

If you don't have 80 per cent of the disabled or 80 per cent of the Indigenous community (vaccinated), those people who are most at-risk of COVID are going to be the least protected. It's going to result in more illness and death than we have to have. So as part of the opening up, these people need to be kept in mind, and it is very important that they're not left behind.

Click on the player at the top of the page to listen to this information in Punjabi.

People in Australia must stay at least 1.5 meters away from others. Check your state’s restrictions on gathering limits.

If you are experiencing cold or flu symptoms, stay home and arrange a test by calling your doctor or contact the Coronavirus Health Information Hotline on 1800 020 080. News and information is available in 63 languages at sbs.com.au/coronavirus

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