Indigenous Australians' COVID-19 vaccine rate at critical risk: doctors

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, November 10, 2021
Adjust font size:

CANBERRA, Nov. 10 (Xinhua) -- Australia's leading doctors' group has called for urgent action to address the low rate of COVID-19 vaccination among Indigenous people.

The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) on Wednesday said that as domestic travel increases with borders reopening vulnerable Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities will be at increased risk from coronavirus.

As of Tuesday, 89.5 percent of Australians aged 16 and over had received one dose of COVID-19 vaccine and 81.1 percent had been fully inoculated, according to the Department of Health.

The figures were significantly lower among Indigenous people, with 54.5 percent fully vaccinated and 66.2 percent have had one dose.

Peter O'Mara, Chair of the RACGP Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health, said urgent action was needed from federal, state and territory governments to address vaccine inequality.

"As Australia opens up and we move to a new normal of living with COVID-19 in the community, we are going to see many more positive cases," he said in a media release.

He noted that as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people already face considerable health inequities and higher rates of chronic disease, they are more at risk of severe illness and death from COVID-19.

"The fact that there remains a serious gap in vaccine coverage between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and non-Indigenous people in our country is a national shame."

According to the data from RACGP, in only the past three months there have been more than 7,000 cases among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, with over 700 people hospitalized, including 80 ICU admissions and 16 deaths in New South Wales (NSW), Victoria and the Australian Capital Territory (ACT).

Australia on Wednesday morning reported more than 1,200 new locally-acquired COVID-19 cases and 17 deaths, as the country continues to battle the third wave of infections.

The majority of new cases were in Victoria, the country's second-most populous state with Melbourne as the capital city, where 1,003 cases and 14 deaths were reported. Enditem

Follow on Twitter and Facebook to join the conversation.
ChinaNews App Download
Print E-mail Bookmark and Share

Go to Forum >>0 Comment(s)

No comments.

Add your comments...

  • User Name Required
  • Your Comment
  • Enter the words you see:   
    Racist, abusive and off-topic comments may be removed by the moderator.
Send your storiesGet more from